20 September 2012

Our Deepest Need in Adversity

Like most of us, when I encounter a problem or trial or some deep affliction, I start plotting how to get myself through it and get relief. But my plans are not God's plans and 99.9% of the time my plans are thwarted. The Lord has something different in mind. I must constantly take myself back to Scripture and remind myself of 2 Corinthians 12:9-10:

    But he said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.” Therefore I will boast all the more gladly of my weaknesses, so that the power of Christ may rest upon me. For the sake of Christ, then, I am content with weaknesses, insults, hardships, persecutions, and calamities. For when I am weak, then I am strong. (2 Corinthians 12:9-10 ESV)

We're often meant to suffer through the trial and learn what the Lord has for us in it. Our first instinct to escape could not be more wrong. John Piper's comments serve us well here:

The deepest need that you and I have in weakness and adversity is not quick relief, but well-grounded confidence that what is happening to us is part of the greatest purpose of God on the universe - the glorification of his Son - the grace and power that bore him to the cross and kept him there until the work of love was done. That's what God is building into our lives. (Quoted from Be Still, My Soul, Embracing God's Purpose and Provision in Suffering, Edited by Nancy Guthrie, Crossway Books, page 152.)

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