29 For it has been granted to you on behalf of Christ not only to believe in him, but also to suffer for him,30 since you are going through the same struggle you saw I had, and now hear that I still have. Philippians 1:29-30
It is a high honor to suffer for the name of Jesus. There are some who preach a false gospel that simply focuses on health and wealth. They distort the truth of God’s word and fail to preach the truth of the cross. The reality of the Christian life is that in this life we will have trouble and we will suffer. It is through the suffering we face that we are refined and perfected into the image of Christ. It is when we are suffering that we learn to fully rely upon the Lord and His grace. We learn to fully stand upon God’s word and to let go of our emotions and our feelings. We learn not to fix our eyes upon our circumstances, but we learn to fix our eyes solely upon Jesus Christ.
All suffering that we face in this life is simply a classroom and a lesson to be learned. In the midst of our suffering we must always remember that God is fully in control. He allows things into our lives because He desires that we would grow into a place of maturity. If we were left to our own devices we would desire to stay in the place that is comfortable. But that would bring about little to no growth. It is only when we are tested and our faith is stretched that true growth takes place. This is never a pleasant process but it is necessary for becoming the sons and daughters who God has called us to be.