Monday, January 23, 2012

2 corinthians 1:6 (afflicted, consolation and salvation)

2 Corinthians 1:6
"Now if we are afflicted, it is for your consolation and salvation, which is effective for enduring the same sufferings which we also suffer. Or if we are comforted, it is for your consolation and salvation."

If you knew that the pain a friend was facing would lead them to God, would you remove the pain? If you understood that the heartache of a loved one would result in the salvation of their soul, would you allow it to happen? If you realized that the suffering that you are dealing with right now meant that God would use you to comfort another person, would you refuse to endure it? Friend, these are difficult questions but they are important ones to ask. If God is good and can be trusted, doesn't that mean He has a plan and purpose for everything...even our pain?

I'm sure when I was born a deaf-mute baby; there were friends and family who saw it as a tragedy. After all, I had to endure years of surgeries, therapy and difficulties just to be able to talk correctly. There are those in the world who would have looked at my situation and asked "how can a good God exist when children have to suffer like this." There's a problem with that thought...they can't see God's full plan. You see, because of my story of hardship, I am able to share comfort with those who have endured similar things. Also, as people hear the amazing story of what God has done in my life, He gets the glory. In the end, my past sufferings have been used to draw men and women into a relationship with God. That, my friend, is worth every moment of pain endured.

Life Lesson: Every pain in life can find meaning by learning to comfort others.

Dear God,
Thank You for the trials You have allowed in my life. Help me to patiently endure those hard times so that I can be used to comfort and minister to others in their times of need. In Jesus' name, Amen.

Living to tell what He died to say,
Pastor David McGee

I find the questions David McGee asks a very pertinant for todays world as they always have been. I would like to address them if I may.

"If you knew that the pain a friend was facing would lead them to God, would you remove the pain?" If I understood the pain was for their salvation though I would suffer seeing them in pain I would walk with them through it and be praying for their salvation. A butterfly emerging from it's cocoon will die if we open it for them. The struggle to be released from their enclosure is what strenghtens and keeps them alive and allows them to be healthy. If I stop another from going through whatever will bring them to the Lord's salvation then I am not really helping them I am killing them.

I was raped, beaten and molested  many times in my life by babysitters, family and even my first husband. I did nothing to cause these things to happen. I was not saved from them yet I always was blessed with God's peace to know He would use them and was with me in them and I would be okay. What I did not know is how He would use them to strengthen me and grow my character, compassion and understanding of others all for His glory.
Did I like what happened? Absolutely not often afterwards I would look back at them and I had been praying during them. Asking God to save me or send someone to rescue me or keep it from happening to me again. I often remembered His Son Jesus the Christ hanging on the Cross and I knew He had called out to the Father and still had to be crucified for my sin. I did not know who I was suffering for yet when I was younger that is what I thought I was doing. Suffering for someone else and I would think to myself, "At least that is one time someone else does not have to go through it." Though they happened I felt protected. I think what happened is He protected my innerself and made me His. Yet I still did not know to accept Him. I thought all that was needed was the acceptance my Godparents had done for me at my 40th day and Babtismal ceremony in the church. You see in the Orthodox Church they believed in infant Baptism on the 40th day as that is usually the time the umbilical cord fell off and one was considered seperate from the Mother and could then be Baptised.
I no longer believe in infant Baptism so a couple of years ago I was Baptised as an adult who understood what was happening and why I was doing it and what it represented. But I digress...

Would I stop someones pain? No yet I would pray on it, pray it would be used to grow them or save them. Now if they were being raped, beat or molested or other atrocities I would turn the perpetrator in and pray for them as well as I have those who did things to me. I forgave them long ago and pray they were/are saved before they pass from this world and go to judgement. When i say I would not stop it I mean the pain it caused can be turned into God's glory if the person turns to God and hopefully I can be of help to them if in no other way than moral support, example or by my stories and life.

Years ago I was privledged to work for the Nurturing Program and others and I worked with children and adults who had gone through pains like mine and I was able to share my story and help them to work through the pain to not just be survivors but Thrivers! That is very important and a great difference. This is the difference in starting out of the cocoon and someone helping the butterfly be released and the butterfly being allowed to make it out themselves and me just keeping the birds away until they can take care of themselves and enjoy all God has given them. He has given me sooooo much and I am so blessed.

And then I go and look at Back to the Bible and it seems to be speaking to the same subject and I felt it would be good to include it here:
Topic: Faith/Trust
Wait on God

Have you ever noticed that one of the hardest things to do is to do nothing? We get frustrated when traffic is stopped. When the line at the supermarket isn't moving, we start fidgeting and look for a line that's moving faster.

And, occasionally, when life is getting really rough; and God doesn't seem to be doing anything at all, some people decide it's time to take matters into their own hands. David, whom we read about in the Bible, certainly had a rough life. Let's see how he handled his difficult times.


Psalm 62 starts out like this:

"For God alone my soul waits in silence;
from him comes my salvation.
He only is my rock and my salvation,
my fortress; I shall not be greatly shaken" (Psalm 62:1-2, ESV).

If you didn't know any better, you'd think David was in a pretty good place in life. His words sound like the confident assertions of a happy person. The next two verses paint a different picture though.

"How long will all of you attack a man to batter him,
like a leaning wall, a tottering fence?
They only plan to thrust him down from his high position.
They take pleasure in falsehood.
They bless with their mouths,
but inwardly they curse" (Psalm 62:3-4, ESV).

Instead of being on easy street, David was surrounded by liars and backstabbers. They were people with no fear of God who only wanted power for themselves. David knew they didn't care about him, and the situation was getting desperate.

So, when in verses 5 and 6, David repeats what he said in verses 1 and 2, we see that they are not the shallow sentiments of a person who has it easy. These words are the foundation of David's faith. David knows that no one besides God can improve his life; no actions of his own can ease the pressures. David is content to wait on God, even in the darkest of hours.

"On God rests my salvation and my glory;
my mighty rock, my refuge is God" (Psalm 62:7, ESV).

Waiting silently is hard enough in a trivial traffic jam, but it takes a rock solid faith in God to be tranquil at the eleventh hour. This kind of faith and trust in God's character doesn't come overnight, but it can start today. We'll look into that in the next sections.


As you read the verses for today, think about the following questions:

1. When David repeats himself in verses 5 and 6, there are small differences from his words in verses 1 and 2. What are the differences and what do they tell you about David?

2. What words does David use to describe God's person and character? How does David see God in this time of his life?


No one would expect you to put your trust in someone you don't know--not even God. That's why He's given us His Word, the Bible. That's why He's given us the testimonies of our friends and family members who have put their faith in God. That's why He's given us the testimony of a precisely ordered nature so even the stars reveal His faithfulness. Spend some time today, and every day this week, getting to know God. Start in His Word and go from there.

Well, let me know your thoughts and what you are or have gone through and how the Lord walked with you and guided you and strengthened you. If you feel He did not share and maybe together we can work through your pain. Until next time may you rest in the Lord.

No comments:

Post a Comment