Sunday, August 28, 2016

When you are suffering, follow Christ's example!

Rick Warren posted a wonderful article that I would like to share with you. It concerned pain and suffering and how to handle it. He began his article with a quote from the Bible:
“To this you were called, because Christ suffered for you, leaving you an example, that you should follow in his steps.” (1 Peter 2:21 NIV)

Rick Warren stated that everyone faces a tragedy at some point in his or her life. Not one of us can escape tragedy. Certainly, Jesus did not escape tragedy. However, Jesus did give us  fine example on handling pain with His death. He gave us a model of what we should do during the worst day of our lives. Look at 1 Peter 2:21: "To this you were called because Christ suffered for you, leaving you an example, that you should follow in his steps." (NIV)

Rick goes on to share that several years ago before Easter, his youngest son took his life. And, it was the worst day of his life. However, he looked to the model of Jesus. The answer that came to him was Easter.

Let's look at what Jesus did during the worst day of his life on earth. First, he reached out to friends. The night that Jesus knew he was going to be arrested and executed, he gathered with his friends. All he wanted was to be with them. God didn't want his son to go through pain on his own. Being with a body of believers is what we need when something awful happens. 

Then, Jesus reached out to God through prayer. In times of trouble you need friends but you need God much more. When no one else will be with you, God will be there right by your side. Remember Jesus prayed to his father in the Garden of Gethsemane. When you pray, say something like "Lord, you can do anything because you are Lord." Then, say, "I can't go through this pain. It is too much." After that, surrender to his will. In other words, "Don't do what you want to do but what God wants for you."

Remember, you and I were not meant to go through suffering alone. When times get tough, reach out and up--because He will be waiting for you.

One other note, when I felt so alone and frightened with physical pain I had--and sometimes still have--I used to feel frightened and alone. It wasn't until my husband told me, "Honey, you are never alone; I am with you but more than anything, Jesus and God are with you." After hearing those words, I got busy praying and reading the Bible. There are three other steps I have taken that have also helped
and they are: (1) I acknowledge each day that I love the Lord with all my heart, body, soul and strength and mind, (2) love my neighbor as myself, (3) try to do what is right according to God's will and then once I do something, I leave it be and move on." After all, like all Christians, I have to be about my Father's business!

Copyright Toni Star 2016