Don’t be Stupid about Suffering.
Don’t like the word stupid? It can be a wake-up word. Remember, being stupid means being in a stupor or daze about the truth. Being stupid is allowing yourself to be in a mental or spiritual fog about subjects that matter—subjects like dealing with suffering.
If you’re suffering pain from within or without, don’t let it take you down. Use it to lift you up, to challenge you. Don’t waste your pain. Give your pain purpose. Make your pain, problem, or heartache work for you not against you.
In Philip Yancey’s helpful book, Pain: The Gift Nobody Wants, he reminds all of us that pain and suffering have meaning if viewed properly. Pain can be a helpful catalyst for building and strengthening your faith.
Threatened faith multiplies.
The news that faith grows when it is threatened is nothing new. What is new is the September 10, 2015, Journal of Religion and Health report entitled, Miraculous Meaning: Threatened Meaning Increases Belief in Miracles.
The research project concluded that people who find meaning in their lives from their faith in God don’t lose their beliefs in the miraculous when their faith is put under pressure or put in meaningless situations.
The new research revealed that religious beliefs, such as having faith in a personal God, can provide significant meaning to those who face hard circumstances. Such beliefs become real resources for coping with life’s minor and major problems.
Don’t be stupid about pain and suffering.
We need to hear what the first-century, suffering Christians in Ephesians heard, “Be children of light. Nobody should deceive you with stupid ideas.” Ephesians 5:6 CEV
During the same period in history, the Apostle Peter encouraged suffering Christians with this word, “Pure gold put in the fire comes out of it proved pure; genuine faith put through this suffering comes out proved genuine.” 1 Peter 1:6-7 MSG