Interestingly, most of the references to suffering in the New Testament are not about common kinds of sorrows that all people deal with, but about persecutions – one sort or another. The Scriptures refer to suffering being a privilege. Not because you have sinned or committed some kind of wickedness but for righteousness’ sake. The Message version words it like this: “Since Jesus went through everything you’re going through and more, learn to think like Him. Think of your sufferings as a weaning from that old sinful habit of always expecting to get your own way.” Consider it a privilege that you suffer along with Christ, and that the world would regard you in the way they did Him.
Peter says, “Don’t be surprised or shocked that you are going through testing that is like walking through fire. Be glad for the chance to suffer as Christ suffered. It will prepare you for even greater happiness when He makes His glorious return.” Suffering is something we should be prepared for and not surprised by. Pain and sorrow is something you can expect in this life.
The Word of God not only encourages you to prepare but to rejoice through your suffering. In the book of Romans, the apostle Paul says, “We gladly suffer, because we know that suffering helps us to endure. And endurance builds character which gives us hope.” You are not alone in your suffering. You have the God of comfort and hope on your side. You can rejoice through your suffering understanding that there is hope.
When you understand that the promises God has are for His children, then even in your sorrows you can rest and rejoice. Pain will be present, but your heart will be filled with peace. Or hope. Or love. It’s a very strange thing to explain when you don’t know Christ, but when you know Him, you know the fruits of His Spirit can fill you up with what you need through the pain.