Charles Stanley (December-27-2019) Daily Devotion: The Way to Blessing.
No one enjoys heartache. Yet God uses pain to mold His children. Although times of happiness are wonderful, times of suffering tend to produce more growth.
Brokenness can highlight parts of us that try to act independently of God. If we have unsurrendered areas of our life, they may hinder our Father’s purposes for us. But in His skillful and loving way, our Father uses our circumstances and discomfort to reveal how dependent on Him we truly are.
The apostle Paul experienced this. After being saved on the road to Damascus, he still needed spiritual growth in order to be most effective for Christ. Therefore, God allowed some type of affliction, which the apostle termed a “thorn.” Three different times, he pleaded with the Lord for its removal, but the thorn remained. Remarkably, Paul’s response was gratitude. Even more, he wrote, “Therefore I am well content with weaknesses, with insults, with distresses, with persecutions, with difficulties, for Christ’s sake; for when I am weak, then I am strong” (2 Corinthians 12:10).
Like Paul, we can dislike suffering and yet still be confident that God is growing us. His purpose is that we walk in intimate oneness with Him and serve effectively according to His purpose and will. To accomplish this, He has to break us of our resistance and self-reliance.
If you truly desire to live for Jesus, trust Him enough to pray, “Lord, more than anything else in life, I want to live for You. Please challenge any areas that are not in complete submission to Your will.”