1 Peter 4:12-13 “Dear friends, do not be surprised at the painful trial you are suffering, as though something strange were happening to you. But rejoice that you participate in the sufferings of Christ, so that you may be overjoyed when his glory is revealed.”
Okay, this might seem like a strange verse for us to memorize on the eve of our great adventure, but actually we picked this verse to daily remind us that suffering is possible. As children our parents do everything they can to shield and protect us from pain and suffering, even now our parents would prefer that we would not put ourselves in such dangerous situations. But we know that our steps are guided by the Holy Spirit and if he is leading us then we cannot turn away. We know that even though God does not want us to suffer, there is always that possibility and we must not feel as though it is punishment but that it is helping us grow. We must learn to rejoice no matter the circumstances.
Sometimes when people become Christians they expect everything in their life to magically become perfect. But we are not promised a perfect, carefree life. We are promised Joy and Peace in a life full of Sin. Sin is what causes the pain and suffering, but Christ has already endured the greatest suffering and so we can Rejoice. We can be glad because of the promise that someday when our time on Earth is done, we will walk up the streets of Gold and experience PERFECT. That day all of our past pains and trials will be reduced to nothing because we will receive the prize that is eternal life with God.
So as we meditate and memorize this verse this week, realize that we suffer for a reason. Realize that trails should be expected, not seen as punishment, but as a repercussion for the sins that have been done and will be done, we must feel pain and trails for a time. This verse reminds us to not feel abandoned when the time comes for our faith to be tested, but to rejoice because we are counted worthy to be tested.
Jeremiah 10:23 says,
“Lord, I know that people’s lives are not their own;
it is not for them to direct their steps.”
1 Corinthians 6:19-20 says,
“Do you not know that your bodies are temples of the Holy Spirit, who is in you, whom you have received from God? You are not your own; you were bought at a price. Therefore honor God with your bodies.”
We know who created us and we know who directs our steps. We trust him to take care of us. We rejoice because we know His will is being done.
Thank you for your continued prayers, only 14 days before we leave!