What’s God’s Goal for You in Suffering?

Dr. Donna HartFor Those Giving Help, For Those Seeking HopeLeave a Comment

ultimate goal

God’s ultimate goal for you. . .what is it? Wealth? Health? Or something so much better? BCC staff counselor and trainer Donna Hart, PhD encourages you to focus on God’s ultimate goal when your circumstances overwhelm you. This article appeared first at her blog. –Ed. logoWhen circumstances overwhelm us, our spirits can feel like they are growing faint, causing us to continually call out to God and complain. In that place, we lose sight of God’s goodness. We think we are entitled to feel good about ourselves and our circumstances. And we may believe that God is withholding what is owed to us.

It is at this point where we will be tempted to numb the pain with alcohol, prescriptions drugs, ice cream, or in extreme cases adultery. These are not the only things we turn to for numbing the pain. We resort to all sorts of worldly pleasures.

The words of Asaph in Psalm 77:3 address the pain in our hearts,

I mused and my spirit grew faint…

In the case of Asaph he found he could neither sleep nor speak because his heart was so fearful for the coming fate of Israel.

You kept my eyes from closing; I was too troubled to speak (Psalm 77:4).

He was well aware of God’s ultimate goal to purify Israel and draw them back to Himself, but this was no comfort to his heart as he stayed focused on the coming threat.

When Relief Doesn’t Come

We can so want relief from the pain and suffering that we lose sight that relief is not God’s ultimate goal. His sovereign plan involves allowing painful circumstances in our lives to make us more like Christ. As Jesus was proven perfect in His suffering, we are also being made perfect in our suffering. The Son of God was a man of sorrows and acquainted with grief, as Isaiah 53:3 teaches us.

We must always remember that God’s faithfulness is not proven by the absence of suffering and trials, but by His sustenance and fellowship in the trial.

We can so easily become discouraged when God does meet He cannot be trusted. It can be hard to think that God would let us down leaving us to lie awake all night in anguish. But the pain and disappointment is warnour desires. We can forget that God does not promised to fulfill our expectations and start to become disappointed in God.

How Your Emotions Help

Emotional pain is God’s warning system. When we analyze our emotions, as God intends for us to do, they lead us to God by accurately showing us our need. The emotions can propel us to search the Scripture to find both the heart of the problem and God’s answer. In the middle of your emotional turmoil, do not forsake the pondering of the Word.

Find the root of those desperate emotions. if you entertain the emotions, you will tend to forget God’s faithfulness and believe your own negative thinking. Don’t keep listening to your own heart. Rather, search the word of God to know the heart of God. Don’t allow your spirit to search itself, but seek the Holy Spirit’s guidance and illumination. And live there, in the safety of His protection.

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