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Posted by Alister Begg for www.truthforlife.org
Original post @ https://www.truthforlife.org/daily/?tab=alistair_begg_devotional&date=04%2F16%2F2023&src=23ELDB0&utm_campaign=Alistair%20Begg%20Daily%20Devotion&utm_medium=email&_hsmi=254329219&_hsenc=p2ANqtz-_3N5bDXLDakeUkiE7tov8WXOEhggH7u8WVTWG55W27wv9SFHwLXWNg0Z7DjTgWARRQkVZ5YtQ6qko-ENmnqdgIOT6jbH9dI97Cgx6VOlrQ3u_4tT8&utm_content=254329219&utm_source=hs_email
God’s Power in Times of Pain
We were so utterly burdened beyond our strength that we despaired of life itself. Indeed, we felt that we had received the sentence of death. But that was to make us rely not on ourselves but on God who raises the dead. He delivered us from such a deadly peril, and he will deliver us. On him we have set our hope that he will deliver us again.
2 Corinthians 1:8-10
Christians do not have to pretend that life feels great all the time.
The apostle Paul certainly didn’t mind admitting to hardship. In fact, Paul’s trials led him to say of his troubles in Asia, “We despaired of life itself. Indeed, we felt that we had received the sentence of death.” Trials and troubles will inevitably come—and, like Paul, we don’t have to act as though everything is always fine.
As we are honest with ourselves and others about our trials, we must also remind ourselves that God has a purpose in our pain. Paul says of his burden that “this was to make us rely not on ourselves.” Isn’t it true that when life is going great, when everything seems rosy, we tend to just cruise along? Then trouble hits, and suddenly we’re forced back to reliance on God. He purposes affliction—illness, loss, difficulty in the workplace, a wayward child—that we might not rely on ourselves but on Him alone.
And what kind of God does Paul say we rely on in our trouble? One “who raises the dead.” In every death—both in the deaths of dreams, hopes, and health in life and then in death itself at the end of life—we can cling to the God who has triumphed over death and will lead us to the fullness of life in eternity. It is through the resurrection of Jesus Christ that God delivers us from sin now and frees us to hope in a final deliverance from all suffering and death. As we await our full experience of resurrection hope, God uses our trials and weaknesses to keep us close to Him.
In Jesus’ own life, resurrection power came after crucifixion pain. The same pattern holds for us. It is in dying that we live. It is in weakness that we are strong. It is in emptiness that we are full. It is in self-forgetfulness that we find true security and confidence in God.
When God sovereignly allows affliction to shake up your life, remember that He has designed that very trial for you to draw closer to Him and rely more fully on Him. And as you learn to rely on Him more and more, His strength will shine through your weakness, and you will know true spiritual power, even through the pain.
Questions for Thought
How is God calling me to think differently?
How is God reordering my heart’s affections — what I love?
What is God calling me to do as I go about my day today?
2 Corinthians 1:3-11
Topics: Death, Hope, Suffering
Devotional material is taken from the Truth For Life daily devotional by Alistair Begg, published by The Good Book Company, thegoodbook.com. Used by Truth For Life with permission. Copyright © 2021, The Good Book Company.
P.S. (from bruce) When there is no other place to turn…turn to God !! If you’re not a “born again” Christian, is the Holy Spirit urging you to open this link ?? Here is the truth about how God’s grace is received to become a Christian in God’s eyes; through understanding and obeying the gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ… https://godsmanforever.com
To my brothers and sisters in Christ, please feel free to share this message of the cross with those in need…
You say you are a “born again” believer… BUT is your soul “ON FIRE” for the Lord ?? If not, open this link – https://godsmanforever.com/2020/08/01/are-you-a-christian-in-gods-eyes-and-on-fire-for-the-lord-or-not/
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