Week of: October 28, 2016 email@example.com
Sharing by: Pam Crawford
Where is God when I'm in pain? - Life Principles Daily Bible
Read: Isaiah Chapter 53
Children periodically need painful immunizations. Often they do not understand that while inoculations hurt, they also protect from serious diseases. From their point of view, the doctor is assaulting them - and someone who loves them is allowing it!
Such an experience gives us little insight into God's dealing with His own children. It helps to answer one of the questions we often ask when painful things happen to us. Where is God?
The Bible tells us that when the ancient Israelites suffered many kinds of hardships, God was right there with them. "In all their affliction He was afflicted," says the prophet (Is. 63:9).
Do you remember your earthly father (or mother) restraining you so that the doctor could administer the painful injection? Perhaps you recall him (or her) commenting that the experience hurt him (or her) more than it did you. That is exactly what God is describing in this passage. To a childish mind, such an action seems utterly incomprehensible; but when we have children of our own, we grasp it clearly. Then we begin to understand what kind of Father we really have. He Himself enters into all our agony, and He has tasted the last drop in our own cup of suffering.
Where is God when we suffer? He is where the pain is. "He was bruised for our iniquities (transgressions), the chastisement for our peace was upon Him" (Is 53:5). God does not pick up and leave us when the hard times come; instead, He is right there with us, ever mindful of the pain we endure.
But not only does God "feel" for us; He also acts on our behalf, even when we don't know it. So Isaiah says, "the Angel of His Presence saved them; in His love and in His pity He redeemed them; and He bore them and carried them all the days of old" (Is. 63:9). Did ancient Israel realize that God was carrying them through all their trials? No, But He did, nonetheless.
As you face adversity, look into the Savior's tear-stained-face, you won't see anything but love. If we would follow Jesus, we must bear the fellowship of His suffering. As Paul reminds us, "For to you it has been granted on behalf of Christ, not only to believe in Him, but also to suffer for His sake" (Phil. 1:29). We must go where He is - and the cross is one of the sweetest places to find Him.
-Dr. Charles Stanley
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