We love to celebrate the resurrection of Jesus. It not quite as easy to celebrate the suffering He went through before he rose. But that suffering had a purpose—it was part of God’s plan. Like Jesus, God’s plan for us can include suffering. It is hard to be happy about that. We don’t usually have a big dinner party with family and friends to celebrate our suffering. But also like Jesus, our suffering has a purpose. It’s up to us to make the most of it, to respond in obedience and submission to God.
It is not easy to walk the same path as Jesus.
Here is an excerpt from The Christian Musicians Devotional to help change our thinking and encourage us as we learn to become more Christ-like.
Suffering to Learn Obedience
“Even though Jesus was God’s Son, he learned obedience from the things he suffered.”
Jesus undoubtedly suffered. Unfortunately, some people act like Jesus suffered so that we should never have to experience any kind of discomfort or suffering. Most Christian music ministers understand that the work Jesus did on the cross does not make us immune from suffering. But, in the back of our minds, many of us think that we should get a pass on some personal suffering because we have devoted our lives to ministry. We say we know that we will probably have to go through more difficult times because we are in ministry, but we expect that suffering to be ministry difficulties. A part of our heart is disappointed when we experience personal suffering. Perhaps our disappointment is not caused as much by our personal discomfort in the situation as it is by not truly understanding that, like Jesus, we learn obedience through suffering. Struggles cause us to become more Christ-like and obedient to His call on our lives. Disappointments, hardships, and trials teach us to rely on God and His love in every circumstance, stretching our faith beyond what it had been able to stretch before. These are things that as Christian leaders we want and desperately need.
Suffering is difficult whenever it comes and in whatever form it takes. We are not always going to respond well, especially at its onset. But Jesus experienced the ultimate suffering, so we know He understands what we are going through. He is sympathetic towards us and He walks with us along the difficult path. We can find strength in His companionship. Suffering is proof that He is building us into the kind of Christian leader He has called us to be. We want to be obedient like Jesus.
Prayer: Father, help me to see suffering as Your hand at work in my life. Cause me to grow into the music minister You desire.
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