Psalm 34:19 (AMP) - Many hardships and perplexing circumstances confront the righteous, But the Lord rescues him from them all.

A while back I ran across a sermon called – The Doctrine of Suffering. I began to sense God stirring something in my spirit. The truth is that many people are going through some pretty difficult times. The hardship and suffering are deep, painful, exhausting and you are looking forward to this season ending. I believe that God wants to do a Healing work in many of us that will be lasting and impactful.

Contrary to much of what is taught today, God never promised us a life free from trials hardship and suffering.  As a matter of fact, He promised us just the opposite. John 16:33 (NIV) - “I have told you these things, so that in me you may have peace. In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world.” (NLT) I have told you all this so that you may have peace in me. Here on earth, you will have many trials and sorrows. But take heart, because I have overcome the world.” Hardship and suffering are a normal part of life, even for Christians.

Trials, hardship, and sorrow hit all of us. They are not something strange or unusual.

1 Peter 4:12-13 - Beloved, do not think it strange concerning the fiery trial, which is to try you, as though some strange thing happened to you; 13 but rejoice to the extent that you partake of Christ’s sufferings, that when His glory is revealed, you may also be glad with exceeding joy.

When we go through trials, suffering and hardship we need to realize that it is not something unusual.

~ Charles Spurgeon – The question of suffering is not a question of if we will face it, but when. Suffering is one of life’s certainties, as is the good which God produces through it.

Ecclesiastes 7:14 - In the day of prosperity be joyful, but in the day of adversity consider:
Surely God has appointed the one as well as the other, so that man can find out nothing that will come after him.

I don’t want you to miss that – God has appointed the one as well as the other. Another translation reads - but when hard times strike, realize that both come from God. Now I realize that is going to mess with some people- good times and difficult times come from God. He allows them both.

~ Carter Conlon – Of Times Square Church – There are some people who have such an aversion to the idea of hardship that they immediately shut down at the mere mention of it. If they don’t hear a message that makes them happy and assures them that everything is going to be fine, they quickly leave in search of a place where they will only hear good news.

Listen this is all fine and good until the reality of hard times come and unspeakable things happen: now not only do you have problems you have no foundation of hope on which to stand.

At the core of hardship is the mercy and goodness of God. God is always faithful to strengthen us and to strategically prepare us for whatever we will have to face.

We need to realize that hard isn’t bad but that HARD IS HARD.

There is purpose in the pain. Someone needs to hear this – God will never allow your pain to be in vain.  Regardless of where our pain comes from or what it is – God will never waste your pain.

James 1:2-4 (NLT) - Dear brothers and sisters, when troubles of any kind come your way, consider it an opportunity for great joy. For you know that when your faith is tested, your endurance has a chance to grow. So let it grow, for when your endurance is fully developed, you will be perfect and complete, needing nothing.

The Bible says that God blesses us with the opportunity to know the joy of growth and victory. The big key is to go through these times PAITENTLY.  WE are to patiently ENDURE.  Enduring means it’s not easy it is hard. Know that God is building His character in us.  If you focus on the hurt, you will continue to suffer. If you focus on the lesson, you will continue to grow.

One of the reasons so many people are hurting is because they have decided to either ignore the pain or they just pretend that it is not really affecting their lives.  On more than one occasion Jesus asked people if they wanted to be healed or what do you want me to do for you.

One of the things that we need to get settled in our spirit is that – We need to understand that it brings God joy to heal us, restore us and to set us free.  You need to believe this. Healing in every aspect, Spiritual, Emotionally, Physically and Mentally is not just for others but is for you.  If this is settled, you will know where to go and where to look when you need help. If not, you will find yourself constantly searching for both solutions and healing.

I believe that at HCC we are in a precious season of healing. We have seen three people in the last several years, literally come back from a death sentence health wise. We have seen many other remarkable healings.  I believe we have yet to scratch the surface of what God has for our lives. In this year of OVERFLOW, I believe we are going to see not only the healing of bodies, but of depression, release from difficult situations, freedom from addiction and joy in place of tremendous sorrow.

It is the hard and difficult times. The times filled with sorrow and pain that God uses for His glory and for our benefit. Hear me – God will never waste your pain.

Thank you for your faithfulness to the Kingdom of God and to HCC.

You are precious to God and to us

Pastor Marvin & Dawn

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