Suffering: the dreaded word
Pastor Tim taught on suffering this past weekend and why God allows it.
As so often happens, when a topic is taught I come across it again in study that very week.
The persecution of God's faithful following Christ's death, was possibly a cover up, an attempt to silence them just in case they were wrong and had in fact killed 'the Christ'. Can you imagine thinking you were killing an impostor only to discover you really did kill God's son? I guess you would scurry to silence those proclaiming Christ's victory over death and performing miracles in His name.
The persecution of the saints caused a scattering of the believers that spread the Gospel far and wide just as Jesus had told his disciples they would spread the Gospel into the uttermost parts of the world! His ways are not our ways. Our ways would ALWAYS be to remain comfortable, thus not moving the message as God desires.
He sometimes allows what we perceive as negative means, including suffering to achieve something amazing and positive!
Beth Moore said this, "when God pulls down a fence in front of us it causes us to expand our horizons." Picture that visual in your mind - it forces us to look side to side instead of focused on where we want to go...
God knows what it takes to move us from our spot of comfort, and sadly it sometimes takes suffering to use us to our full potential for Him. I pray to stay attentive to where God is leading me, for it is my greatest desire to be a vessel that spreads the message of the Gospel - not to stand in it's way!