23rd August 2020

God with Us in Suffering 

“Listen closely to my prayer, O Lord; hear my urgent cry. I will call to you whenever I’m in trouble, and you will answer me.”
Psalm 86: 6-7 (NLT) 

I recently visited the dentist. Turns out he had to extract one of my wisdom teeth. Now, I hate dentists! The scraping, the drilling, the water being sucked out of, or sprayed into, my mouth, the residual pain. Even having to hold my mouth wide open for half an hour gives me jaw-ache. I know I’ll be okay when it’s over and my mouth heals, but, when I’m in that chair, I’m suffering. I’m praying, “God, please help me get through this!” It might seem silly, but I think you know what I’m talking about. Maybe you’ve felt like this in other situations, and maybe you prayed as I did.

It’s natural to pray when we’re in trouble. You’ve probably heard the saying: “There are no atheists in sinking ships.” Suffering turns our hearts toward God. We can read many examples in the Bible, but David seems to write the best about suffering. He believes God hears when we pray, especially when we’re suffering or in trouble. David promises to call out to God in prayer, and then he confidently says that God will answer him. We can do the same.

But does this mean that our suffering will be removed? That some miracle will happen? Though that’s what we would like, prayer is not some £20 inserted into a vending machine called God. It’s possible that our suffering will go away, but the answer God provides is often an inner knowing or assurance that we are not alone in our suffering. God’s presence strengthens us and gives us courage and hope in the midst of difficulties.

Sometimes other people come alongside us in our suffering and help us; and God ministers to us through their words and their actions. But suffering is part of being human. Jesus suffered, and his example of patient endurance when mistreated, wrongly accused, beaten and nailed to a cross can help us put our suffering in perspective. God never left Jesus while he suffered, and God will never leave us.

If you are suffering today, even if it’s just a visit to the dentist, know that you do not suffer alone. God hears your prayers, your requests for comfort, and he always answers with his presence.

Prayer
Gracious Father, may we feel your comforting presence and assurance in our suffering. May we reflect daily on Jesus’ example, and strive to live our lives as he lived. In Jesus’ name we pray.
Amen
 

Presented by Heber Ticas

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About the Presenter:
The Day by Day each Sunday is taken from ‘Speaking of Life,’ ( https://www.gci.org/videos/media-speaking-of-life/), a public resource video on the USA website of Grace Communion International. Heber Ticas is an Elder in Grace Communion International and is the Superintent of the Churches in Latin America. He also serves as the National Coordinator for Church Multiplication in the United States.

Local Congregation:
You are welcome to attend one of our local Church congregations located throughout the UK and Ireland.  For details of your nearest local congregation, check on our website, www.gracecom.church under the ‘Churches’ tab, or ring +44 (0)1858 437099.

Contact:
Email:  admin@daybyday.org.uk

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