Great strength is found in unbearable pain! In fact, the pain you experience today will build the strength you need for tomorrow.
Paul learned a thing or two about pain. In 2 Corinthians 12:8, after praying (NLT says ‘begging’) three times for God to remove a metaphorical painful thorn from his side, God didn’t remove it. In fact, in verse 9 Paul changed his tune completely. He discovered after three failed attempts that God gives strength to endure pain, not escape it. He also learned that God’s power is perfected in his weakness!
The truth of the matter is that God doesn’t promise certain limits to suffering(s). He doesn’t guarantee personal happiness. He doesn’t ensure our escape from pain. His people are often crushed beyond measure and we know that scripture makes this abundantly clear.
However, we mustn’t forget that we serve a God that never ends on a negative. Here are some guarantees God’s word does give us:
*Suffering will come, but we will also share in Christ’s glory (1 Peter 4:12-13).
*All that happens will be for our good, to make us more like Jesus (Rom 8:28-30).
*Nothing can ever separate us from God’s love (Rom 8:38-39).
*He won’t let us be tempted – that is, tested – beyond what we can bear, but will provide a way for us to endure it (1 Cor 10:13).
*He will give us all we need for life and godliness (2 Pet 1:3)
*In our weakness, he will give us strength (2 Cor 12:9-10 cf 2 Cor 4:7-12; Phil 4:11-13; Col 1:11-14).
Welp, that’s enough right here to chew on for the rest of our natural lives. But, I will close this message with repeating what Paul said to the church at Ephesus in Ephesians 6:10, “Finally [my brothers and sisters], be strong in the Lord and in His mighty power.” To be strong doesn’t mean that you won’t experience any pain! However, it does mean that you refused to give up even when the pain becomes unbearable.