It’s easy in times of pain, suffering and confusion to question where God is and how He could possibly be present and allow you to suffer in this way. It’s easy to convince yourself that if God really loved you and cared, He wouldn’t put you through this. Recently though, it’s been placed on my heart that God does indeed use every season of suffering to better us, our relationship with Him and fulfill His plan for our beautiful life. Here’s just a few ideas as to what He might be doing:
1. Fulfilling His plan for your life
We tend to think we have it “all figured out for ourselves”. We think we know what we need and want more than God could possibly know so we question what He is doing when He takes those things away from us. The amazing thing is, God knows every step to our future before we are even born. Every bump in the road is a precise step in His perfect plan for our life.
2. Stretching you and growing you beyond what you could even imagine
It’s incredibly hard to believe this in the moment but sometimes God uses hardship and bumps to help us grow. If we never experienced hurt and heartache, how would we ever know joy and true happiness? God uses our times of weakness to build us up and make us stronger and tougher than ever before.
3. Saving you for something better
Sometimes God says no to something good for us, in order to say yes to something great for us. We become so blinded to what WE want and what WE think is best for ourselves, that we cling to what “makes sense” and what is comfortable, while God truly knows what is best for us.
4. Teach you something
If your mom is anything like mine, she used the hard times you went through to teach you the most about life. I like to think that God does the same thing for us. When we are weak and in times of struggle, God can do His greatest work in our hearts and in our lives. So my challenge to you would be, next time you are faced with a hard situation, ask where God may be speaking to you and ask yourself what you could learn.
5. Protecting You
Put simply, when we trust in our own plans we create for our lives, we often end up hurt and more broken than ever before. If instead, we choose to trust in the Lord’s plan for our life, we may rest in His promise to protect us from harm, evil and hurt.
6. Growing your faith and trust in Him
If you’ve ever heard someone share their “testimony” or their story of how they come to know Christ, it usually begins in a rather dark place, a time of hurt and suffering. It is the light which comes from Jesus in those times of darkness that brings them joy and healing once again.
I have absolutely hit some huge bumps in the road in my short twenty years of life, however, it is in these truths that I find comfort and assurance that God is working His limitless power and abundant love, transforming my life and my heart.