Positively Good Productions
Sowinig blessings and life lessons to encourage, refresh, and benefit our lives.
We've all felt it: the agonizing pain of the
world... the shadowy recesses attempting to
obscure the light.
It doesn't take much to be taken aback by
how devastating life can be. In times of
adversity, it's natural to wonder,
Even those of us who have experienced the
blessings of God have sometimes wondered
why individuals who bear no guilt
are unfairly demonized, oppressed, and
Have you ever wondered, at times of great
suffering, why the wicked prosper while
the good, decent, noble, and righteous suffer
Have you ever asked yourself, why does
sorrow and anger have to exist?
We may think we're entirely alone when we
are in agony. We tend to feel powerless and
ineffectual. We may believe that God is not
there when we most need Him.
One might question how a just God could
allow such tragedies to happen.
How could God, who loves us so deeply,
allow pain into our lives?
but God does not cause,
Nothing happens without God’s permission.
Even the devil has to seek God's permission.
Evils perpetrated by humans with evil intentions
are brought about... not by God's will, but only
by God's permission.
Satan was granted permission, by God, to take
Job's family, fortune, and health. However, God
would not allow Satan to take Job's life (Job 2:6).
Satan is on a short leash, acting only within the
boundaries set by God. And all wicked deeds are
the same in this regard. The sinner can only go
so far before being dealt with by God.
God uses challenging circumstances in
order to help us recognize our need
for Him and dependence on Him.
We must realize that life, both bodily
and spiritual, is entirely dependent on
what God provides. Our reactions to
adversities show what is in our hearts,
or what truly inspires us. Humiliation
demonstrates what is truly present. He
causes us to suffer in order for us to
become conscious of our own needs.
He is testing us to determine if we
would live by faith, relying on
Him to provide our needs. He
wants to see if we will adhere to
His commandments... even when
disregarding them will meet a need.
Things happen to believers so that
we might have attributes of intellect,
character, and heart that we would
not otherwise have. We can carry
these attributes beyond the grave and
into God's Kingdom.
In John 15:5, Jesus states,
"Without Me, you can do nothing."
Only by joining forces with God
in His plan, as we continue on our journey,
can we yield the fruits of God's Spirit.
During his saga, Job came to that realization,
which led to deep repentance for his foolish
questioning of God's plan. He also realized
that "God can do anything, and no plan of
His can be thwarted."
Nobody in power, or the ruler of any country,
can carry out any decision or policy unless
God grants them 'permission' to do so.
"Mortals make elaborate plans, but God
has the final word."
Whatever circumstances we may be in,
God not only permitted them, but also
designed them for His most excellent use.
Nothing can happen unless God allows it!
God's "permission" is an efficacious authorization.
God allows with reluctance because of His
righteous detest of wickedness.
Suffering, despair, and death can all be
excruciatingly heartbreaking experiences,
but those who have experienced God's love
know that all will work out, in the end, for
the greater good.
God longs to make us whole.
The Scriptures are unequivocal. Everything
that occurs in this world passes through
God’s sovereign hand. However, just because
God permits suffering does not imply that
He causes it (James 1:13-18). Instead, He
ultimately makes use of all of it to carry out
His intended purpose.
God allows things to occur
because they serve a divine
Even when the world thinks that God is not
reigning, He is. Even when pandemonium
occurs, God remains in control. God is still
in control even when things start to go awry.
God is adept at making the best possible
outcome of a bad situation. He will use
all situations to accomplish His purpose.
Troubles, trials, and tragedies directly
impact us all, and no one is immune to
the harsh realities of life or suffering.
May we always remember and never forget –
God specializes in transforming
crucifixions into resurrections.
Things we wish to be removed from our lives
tend to be the very things that God employs
to shape and mold us into the people He
desires us to be. He can make our issues
work for us.
According to Scripture...
testing, trial, suffering, and chastening are God's
ways of purifying, cleansing, and conforming us
to the image of His Son, Jesus.
God is aware of and
attends to our every need.
God has a higher purpose and reward
behind every problem, and God is capable
of divinely orchestrating all of our trials
and sufferings in order to strip away all of
the worldly things on which we were relying...
and eventually draws us towards being the
people He desires for us to be.
God will use every circumstance
to achieve His goal.
Suffering doesn't accomplish anything
material, but it can generate an environment
for growth and compassion.
The Scriptures remind us,
"that for those who love God,
all things work together for good."
God is still at work in the midst of pandemics,
wars, and natural calamities. He has a plan and
will carry it out, even in the face of anguish and
God is our utmost Supporter; He is our
Merciful Provider, our Rock, and our Comforter.
God's power is made perfect in our weakness.
God's grace is more than sufficient for our
needs. God's strength is perfected in our
God, in His mercy, allows severe storms and
great anguish to reveal to us essential truths
about His grace and mercy. When we cry out
to God for help and strength, we find that God's
provision is more than enough to meet our needs.
Spiritual traditions from all over the world
emphasize that, while life can be difficult,
God is at work, using our circumstances to
humble us and shape us into the people He
wants us to be.
"God whispers to us in our pleasures, speaks
to us in our conscience, but shouts in our pains:
it is His megaphone to rouse a deaf world,"
C.S. Lewis once said.
Innocent suffering is the same
as the suffering of Jesus.
What does it mean, then, to
"Share in His sufferings"?
To suffer with Jesus means to face persecution,
opposition, and hardship.
We may feel that God is unfair and harsh at times,
but He is a God of Love who allows things in our
lives that are temporarily very painful in order for
His eternal purposes to be worked out.
Followers of Jesus are called to some level
of suffering. We share in His sufferings in
order that we may also share in His glory.
Sadness is a part of our journey.
As Believers, it is inevitable that at some point
we will encounter trials. No one in the entire
world is immune to the various types of pain
and suffering that can befall us in this life.
God will sometimes use a certain amount of pain
and suffering to shape, mold, and transform us.
We should trust God to take care of us because
God was able to bring about such a glorious
outcome from Jesus' suffering.
We are all troubled by our inner thoughts
How are we to respond to suffering?
What do we do, and how do we respond
when suffering strikes our family?
Is there any way we can "Learn" what to
do about suffering?
How can we help those who are suffering?
Is there purpose in pain?
Is there any escape?
Where is God in all of this suffering?
Will there ever be a way out of this confusion?
Where and when can we see the fulfillment
of our heart's desire?
Are we doomed to just suffer, and live as
These are questions that countless individuals
have wrestled with... and tried to figure out.
Acts 5:41 says that after the apostles were
flogged for preaching the Good News about
Jesus, "the apostles left the Sanhedrin, rejoicing
because they had been counted worthy of
suffering disgrace for the Name." They were
being identified with their Savior; they were
being treated in the same manner as Jesus;
they were sharing in His suffering!
So, when people hate us because we are
identified with Jesus, when they attack and
persecute us because we bear His Name, when
we lose our jobs, families, freedom, or even
our lives for the sake of the gospel, we are
sharing in the Lord's sufferings.
We are called to this, and we should
jump for joy! “We must go through many
hardships to enter the kingdom of God,”
Taking up our cross daily
leads to transformation.
Suffering is part of our experience on earth.
The human experience is varied and diverse, but
few things are as inescapable as suffering. The
pains and difficulties will differ from person to
person, but we all suffer.
There is a purpose in the pain.
Suffering can be one of the ways
God works with us for our own
growth and to bring us to a better
understanding of Himself.
When people's private resources are depleted,
they are willing to turn to the "Ultimate Resource"
Perhaps this is the time to
turn to God.
Suffering in life can be a powerful jolt that helps
us become more discerning and progressive.
confront aspects of ourselves that we might
otherwise avoid. God can then use our
suffering to shape us into better people,
people who can love and enjoy Him
Romans 5:3-5; James 1:2-4
God desires to heal us and bring us
out of our state of brokenness.
With God in the forefront,
we will get through this.
Suffering prepares us to feel empathy,
emotionally connect, comfort those
in pain, understand and share another
Those who can genuinely say,
"Suffering has redeeming value,"
discovers one of the most heartwarming
reasons that suffering has redeeming
Empathy is the fruit of suffering. Empathetic
"I understand how you feel.
I've been in your shoes."
Suffering "makes room for learning and love.
Suffering serves to humble us and awaken
us from our self-sufficiency illusion.
There may be times on our journey when we
feel we can't go any further, but God wants us
to know that His strength is made perfect
in our weakness.
May we boldly place our hardships at God's feet,
knowing that God's grace and strength are made
perfect in our weakness.
This happened during Jesus' life on earth. He was
heard because of His reverent submission.
That is what it takes to faithfully take up our cross
daily! We have to cry out to God for the strength to
hold out – for the strength to say “No” and keep
saying “No” in the time of temptation. We must
humble ourselves and have the same mind that
“Not My will, but Yours, be done.”
God uses even the most painful
suffering for good.
Let us always remember and never forget:
The Cross precedes the
We believe many of the richest, fullest, and
most fruitful lives are those who have been
developed in the Divine crucible of testing
and tribulation. The severe testing either breaks
or purifies us, which is reason enough to
rejoice and count it all joy...
even as we weep.
According to James, "My brothers and sisters,
take heart when you fall into various temptations,
knowing that the testing of our faith produces
But let patience do her perfect work, so that
we will be perfect and complete,
wanting nothing." "
When we face trials and challenges, James advises
us to be perfectly content. The testing of our faith
leads to patience, and when we allow patience to
run its full course, it will lead us to strength of
character and refinement.
God's intention is for God's glory... and for
God's works to be revealed.
A person's integrity allows
them to persevere.
Integrity implies that we do not compromise
and thus do not give up. Integrity is not
something that develops overnight, but rather
through repeated tests. God sends trials to purge
us of sin and allow us to grow and mature in
When human support or material assistance
of any kind is removed, that is when God's
power can become active.
We believe that the entire universe is God's garden,
and that God wants His garden to grow, mature,
We believe the Master Gardener prunes every
branch in us, whether it's a person, place, or
thing that doesn't bear fruit... or stifles our growth
God will give a crown of beauty for ashes, a joyous
blessing instead of mourning, festive praise instead of
despair. In their righteousness, they will be called great
oaks that God has planted for His own Glory.
Surviving hardship can teach us valuable lessons
about ourselves and the world around us,
strengthen our resolve, deepen our empathy,
and eventually allow us to evolve and grow as
Suffering's transformative effect suggests that
it is our greatest pain that may contain a deeper
purpose. Perhaps the function of human
compassion serves that purpose.
To summarize, regardless of why we suffer, it is
clear that love is the cure for suffering, and that
all suffering, after many detours, eventually leads
to love and God's glory being revealed in that
Suffering teaches us to rely on God.
Pain and suffering causes us to seek
intervention from God. We hold fast to
Go, Who alone is our rock and secure
foundation. We recognize we are not in
control and that our lives are a "mist
that appears for a little while and then
Suffering teaches us to rely on God in ways
that nothing else can, and it makes it possible
for us to recognize that God is sufficient. It
helps us to recognize that God is far more
valuable than anything this world is able
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