Text: John 9: 1-12 – Other references: Matthew 7:25; I Corinthians 6:19; Galatians 6:2; Romans 8:28; II Timothy 1:7; John 16:33; Isaiah 53:5; Romans 8:17
Suffering is something that is all around us, physical suffering, emotional suffering, and suffering that involves both. It a difficult subject.
Part of the discussion of suffering is the question of Who is God? Is He good?
Many people leave God out of their thoughts— and then when suffering strikes, they wonder how God allowed it.
What I believe about God changes how I look at my suffering. What I believe is true will determine how I live.
Jesus is our Rock, the Rock that we can stand on when difficulty comes. A firm foundation is necessary if we are going to face great suffering.
Our faith may feel shaken in difficulty, but we do not have to be moved.
We as Christians believe He is good, all-powerful, sovereign, and all-knowing— and that this is true even in a world of suffering. We do not know how this all works together, but we believe it is true.
If God is holy and all-powerful and good, and then I suffer, I will not be able to accept it if I am looking at things selfishly. It is not about me.
We were destined for eternal punishment, and Jesus paid that debt. We are not our own.
Place yourself in this story… the disciples and the blind man…
What attitudes do we see here?
When the disciples saw the blind man, they immediately had judgement. It is easy to misunderstand hurting people. We can be like Job’s friends and try to fix their problems without understanding them.
Here’s a good measuring stick for judgement: If I don’t understand all the reasons for my own suffering, how can I judge the reasons for someone else’s suffering?
Give the benefit of the doubt. Don’t assume that the popular opinion about someone is correct.
Carry the suffering to Jesus.
What attitude should we have in our own sufferings?
It is not about me; It is all about Jesus Christ and His kingdom— even in suffering.
It’s true that all things are working for good for those of us who believe. But it’s hard. Very hard.
What if we were controlled by the Holy Spirit instead of our circumstances?
Is it possible to rejoice in our sufferings? We have a God Who is victorious over all!
When my dad was dying in the hospital, when he passed, my mother had us all sing a song about heaven, a song of hope…
Do you have that solid foundation? Will you fall apart or will you stand on Jesus?
What is the gospel if it only works when the sun is shining?
God has this neat trick that he uses against Satan- every time Satan attacks one of the members of the kingdom God turns it right back against Satan.
A perfect example of this is the cross. Satan thought He had won; And yet Jesus rose from the dead, freeing people from Satan’s kingdom and defeating death.
Jesus knows what it is to suffer.
It is through Jesus scars that we are healed. Jesus took our nails and passed the healing on to us. Spiritual healing, emotional healing, and (sometimes) physical healing come to us from Jesus, from His own suffering.
We have scars, but when we allow Jesus to touch those scars, they can be used in the healing of others.
Is He your all in all? Is He your foundation in suffering?