“For this light momentary affliction is preparing for us an eternal weight of glory beyond all comparison.” 2 Corinthians 4:17
Often the life of the believer seems to be one trial after another, and we may often wonder why does God allow so much suffering in the lives of his children? But in the verse above, we are reminded that the very affliction that God has allowed into our lives is the means that God uses to wean our hearts from this earth and draw us ever deeper into loving intimacy with Him. The very trials associated with the perishing of the outward man are used for the renewing and the strengthening of the inner man.
On July 30, 1967, (50 years ago today!) Joni Eareckson became a quadriplegic because of a dive into the shallow waters of Chesapeake Bay. Although Joni initially suffered deep depression, and pleaded with God for healing, yet her Heavenly Father saw fit to allow Joni great suffering, in order that He might use her in great ways for His kingdom! Recently Joni testified that she not only accepted her quadriplegia, but she actually thanks God for it! “O Jesus, thank You, for a “no” answer to a request for physical healing. … A “no” answer, Lord Jesus, to a request for physical healing has meant that I’m depending more on Your grace, but it’s increasing my compassion for others who are hurt and disabled, it’s helped me put complaining behind me, … it has increased my faith. It has strengthened my hope of heaven and it’s made me love You so much more…so much more. … And I would not trade it for any amount of walking.”
Often those who God chooses to use in great ways, he first moulds for His purposes through great suffering. May God enable each of us to increasingly “count it all joy” when we face trials knowing the Lord is with us, and he designs to use our trials to draw our hearts in ever closer intimacy with Him, and to prepare for us an eternal weight of glory beyond all comparison!