Focal Passage: 1 Peter 4:12-19
C.S. Lewis once wrote to a friend his reflections on suffering: “We are not necessarily doubting that God will do what’s best for us, we are wondering how painful the best will turn out to be.”
Perhaps this is why Peter urges the readers of 1 Peter 4:12-19 to faithfully and unreservedly entrust themselves to God while enduring suffering.
In the midst of suffering, trials, and hard times it is very hard to see beyond the pain and anxiety of what lies ahead.
Trusting in God during the darkest period requires a rock solid belief in the gospel, and it requires the indwelling and life giving power of the Holy Spirit.
Peter proclaims that when fiery trials hit, and they will, we are to rejoice.
What strange words.
We are to rejoice in suffering because in them we share in sufferings of Christ. And if we share in the sufferings of Christ we can rest assured that we will also share with him in his glory.
Moreover, we are told that when suffering strikes the Holy Spirit rests upon us giving us a taste of what is to come. Our hope rests in the finished work of God when the very word ‘suffering’ no longer exists in the human vocabulary.
There will come a day when all things are made new, when God will wipe away every tear, when death shall be no more, when there will be no mourning, nor crying, nor pain.
As we await that day may we entrust our souls to the creator and sing with our brothers and sister the famous words penned by Horatio Spafford:
When peace, like a river, attendeth my way,
When sorrows like sea billows roll;
Whatever my lot, Thou has taught me to say,
It is well, it is well, with my soul.