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Suffer Well

“In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world” (John 16:33b).
Life is hard. Life is not what we want it to be most of the time. We might wonder, “Where is the abundant life God promised? I chose to serve God, so why is He punishing me with this trouble?”
A familiar saying holds the answer: What doesn’t kill you makes you stronger. Jesus learned obedience by what He suffered (Hebrews 5:8). And He tells us in the gospels, a servant is not above his master (Matthew 10:24). If our Savior and Lord learned obedience to God through suffering, why would it not be the same for us? We have hope if we endure through suffering. Jesus endured the cross for the joy set before Him (Hebrews 12:2). That joy is both resurrection from the dead and unity with His Father and all believers. We are privileged to have the same inheritance through Christ.
God is not out to punish us, nor is he really concerned with our comfort. He is concerned with our holiness. Suffering is a part of life for the believer. But will we endure? Will we suffer well and grow?

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