Three Things to Consider When Suffering Makes an Appearance

As believers who love the Lord and long to share in His resurrection, we know we must share in His suffering as well. Most of us, though, want to choose the form our suffering will take.

share in suffering

We plan, scheme, beg and bargain to avoid the worst of the suffering. A little bit of hardship is okay, even expected. A brief financial struggle. Minor relationship difficulties. Curable health issues. That’s suffering enough, right?

For some, yes. For others, no. It’s not up to us to decide.  

Suffering Has a Purpose

Difficult circumstances serve a purpose, and we should expect them. But none of us would intentionally bring on or happily welcome serious afflictions.

However, God has a far more reaching view and comprehensive understanding than you and I do. If he allows a tragedy to occur, He’ll not only see us through it, He’ll redeem it for a greater purpose. 

Through whatever suffering we face, God will change us for the better if we let Him. He’ll grow us and refine us. He’ll chip away at our pride, arrogance, selfishness, greed, impatience, and all the rest.

Through whatever suffering we face, God will change us for the better if we let Him. Click To Tweet

God’s Light in the Dark

That doesn’t mean we shouldn’t be sad or grieve the loss. It doesn’t mean we won’t walk through some dark times. 

But if we look for it, if we wait for it, we’ll begin to see God’s light shine brighter and more persistently, illuminating even in the darkest corners. 

If we look for it, we'll begin to see God's light shine brighter & more persistently even in the darkest corners. Click To Tweet

Over time, we can learn to look for and notice the beauty that will grow out of hardships, in us and in others. (And there can be beauty from even the ugliest situation.)


“In the day of prosperity be joyful, but in the day of adversity, consider: God has made the one as well as the other, so that man cannot discover anything that will come after him.” (Ecclesiastes 7:14)

So when the dark threatens to push out the light, when your world begins to flip, when suffering takes on a form you would never willingly allow, consider

  1. what possibilities await
  2. what grace is meeting you
  3. what might God have planned for this new challenge

When your world begins to flip upside down, lean into Jesus; consider what God might have planned for this challenge. Click To Tweet

Our own suffering allows us to share in the suffering of Christ. It’s not an easy path to walk, but God will be faithful through it all. 

Our own suffering allows us to share in the suffering of Christ. And God will be faithful through it all. Click To Tweet

“Therefore let those who suffer according to God’s will entrust their souls to a faithful Creator while doing good.” 1 Peter 4:19  

Reflections: What form of suffering are you currently experiencing? What might God be doing in and through it? What’s the next step of faith you can take? 

It’s been nearly 5 years of counting and I’ve well passed 5,000 gifts in Ann Voskamp’s Joy Dare! What a blessing! Here are numbers #5252–5282. Read my entire list by clicking here.

  • Perfect day to write outside; Second and third batch of green beans canned; Rachel exercising her independence in increasing measure
  • Beginning the day with a beautiful morning wog; A big chunk of writing done for ‪#‎EverydayPraise‬; Understanding and cooperation to allow for a focused afternoon
  • Great lessons learned by others and shared with me; Settling my mind by weeding the garden; Another afternoon stretch to do one of the things I love: write encouragement
  • A rainy morning, perfect for reducing the humidity outdoors and getting work done indoors; Rachel’s new-found “hurry” mode, she squeals and kind of runs, so cute; Stormy night, perfect for sleeping
  • Made delicious homemade granola; Zach’s home for the rest of the summer!; Caught up on laundry
  • Saturday with lots of family; God’s glory shining in the lives of babies and little ones; Laughing, loving, and sharing memories: the glue that holds families together
  • Some difficult yet sweet conversations with nieces, nephews and sister-in-laws; Losing game of Monopoly played with Zach and Joey (joy because they’re home to play); Settled back at home after weekend away 

By His grace ≈


Encourage Others by Sharing This Post

Find hope in your real-life struggles. We'll chase it together! I am a wife; mom of 4 (including a young adult daughter with special needs); miscarriage mom of 5; author & follower of Jesus Christ. I write, edit, speak and enjoy everything outdoors.

2 comments on “Three Things to Consider When Suffering Makes an Appearance
  1. Cecelia Lester (Quiet Spirit) says:

    Julie: I have learned to take things in stride and rely on Jesus to handle the issues of my life, good and bad.

Join the Discussion

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.