When “Adulting” Includes Suffering

by | Oct 11, 2017 | Glorifying God, Spiritual Health, Stress, Suffering

Preparing for adulthood includes learning how to manage money, being responsible with technology, finding a right-fit career, considering what to look for in a future spouse, etc. But sometimes, what can be overlooked is planning for the trials of life.

Jen’s Keeping Room Tips:

It’s important to know what the Bible says about suffering, such as:

  • Acceptance of the fallen state of the world leads to a realistic, healthy perspective. (Rom. 5:12-21; Eph. 6:12-13; 1 Pet. 4:12)
  • Joy and fullness of life in Christ includes hardships and suffering. (Col. 1:24-29)
  • Suffering is a prompt to pray. (James 5:13)
  • There are great blessings in suffering. (1 Pet. 3:14)
  • The Bible provides the strategies needed to endure suffering. (Ps. 40:11b)
  • Suffering does not make God less than perfectly good. (Rom. 2:4)
  • God is in control of suffering at the same time as feeling everything we feel. (Ps. 97:1; Mt. 25:42-45)
  • He modeled how to do suffering. (Lk 23:46)
  • Responding well to suffering brings God glory and takes Christians to glory. (1 Pet 4: 16; Rom. 8:17-18)
  • You can achieve a special status in suffering, and can gain others’ attention for Christ through it. (Phil. 1:27-29)
  • Going through trials lifts you out of earthly focus and back to an eternal view. (2 Tim. 1:8-12)
  • Being well-prepared for suffering is not the same as being cynical, anxious, or dreading the future. (Prov. 31:25)

Having a personal relationship with Jesus is a game-changer when it comes to suffering.

  • Seeing Him at work in tough times leads to a grateful spirit. (Ps. 34)
  • Suffering is an opportunity to be comforted by the Divine Comforter. (2 Cor. 1:3-7)
  • The Lord allows hard times to produce rewarding, personal character transformation. (Rom. 5:3-4)
  • He uses physical woes to expose crucial spiritual needs. (Mt. 9:2)
  • Suffering reveals the need for faith in God. (Is. 41:10)
  • What Jesus did on the cross becomes more precious in the face of evil. (Heb. 2:9)
  • He gives you precisely what you need to tolerate the suffering you’ve been given. (Heb 4:16)
  • Hard times create a beneficial dependency on the Lord. (2 Cor. 11:16-12:10)
  • Sharing in Christ’s suffering can make you more like Him. (Phil. 3:10-11)
  • Suffering can bond you to Jesus Christ in a deep, sacred way. (Phil. 3:7-8)

Suffering is a time for community to rally around those who are hurting:

  • Joining with others through suffering keeps you from feeling alone. (1 Pet. 5:9)
  • There is no greater hero to look up to than someone who is suffering and clinging to Christ in faith. (James 5:10-11)
  • Suffering is an opportunity to show and receive love and comfort from special people in your life. (2. Cor. 1:3-4)
  • Your suffering can be united to Christ’s sufferings for your benefit and for the sake of the Body of Christ. (Col. 1:24)
  • Prayers in times of suffering remind you how much you are loved, and Jesus is always found in prayer teams. (Mt. 18:20)
  • Through hardship, relationships can become more authentic. (Ruth 2:11)
  • Suffering often occurs in seasons. Sometimes you’re on the receiving end of support and sometimes you’re on the giving end. (1 Pet. 1:6; Eph. 4:2)
  • Doing life in a Christian community gives you the opportunity to be held up by brothers and sisters in Christ when you struggle, to know deep satisfaction of pointing others to Christ when they suffer, and to grow in Christ together. (Jn. 13:35)

“We are hard-pressed on every side, yet not crushed; we are perplexed, but not in despair; persecuted, but not forsaken; struck down, but not destroyed – always carrying about in the body the dying of the Lord Jesus, that the life of Jesus also may be manifested in our body.” (2 Cor. 4:8-10)

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I am a Board Certified Christian Counselor by the Georgia Board of Examiners for Christian Counselors & Therapists.

I am also a member of the Association of Biblical Counselors (ABC) and receive continuing education from the Christian Counseling & Educational Foundation (CCEF).

The Keeping Room

A Creative Christ-Filled Counseling Experience for Youth & Parents