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Pastor's Thoughts

Find updates, thoughts, event notices, or short message from Pastor Tim in his weekly blog posts. 

Wednesday Thoughts from Pastor Tim - January 11

Dear Church Family –

With the war in Ukraine dragging on with millions of people displaced, and with massive, widespread, devastating flooding in California causing whole communities to be evacuated, perhaps it’s time to revisit the question, “Why does God allow suffering in the world?”

It’s a hard question. God is all-powerful and all-loving, and yet, He allows suffering to hurt His people and His creation.

The reasons I’m about to list are easy to list, difficult to live. Instinctively, human beings want our suffering to matter. To think that our suffering is meaningless makes it unbearable. But we can rest assured that Jesus knows our suffering, He cares about our suffering, and He redeems our suffering—makes it count, turns it into something useful.

Here’s some reasons I suggest God allows suffering in our lives and our world. I’d love to hear what you would add to the list.

  • To remind us we live in a broken, fallen world.

  • To remind us that sin has consequences and affects others around us

  • To draw us to God

  • To draw us to long for the rest and peace of Christ, and heaven, and of a world made right

  • To humble us

  • To break our idols

  • To strengthen our faith

  • To help us identify with Christ’s sufferings

  • To draw us to identify with other hurting people

  • To give time and motivation for people to repent and be saved

  • To break this world's hold on us

  • To make us like Christ

“For I consider that the sufferings of this present time are not worthy to be compared with the glory that is to be revealed to us. For the anxious longing of the creation waits eagerly for the revealing of the sons of God. For the creation was subjected to futility, not willingly, but because of Him who subjected it, in hope that the creation itself also will be set free from its slavery to corruption into the freedom of the glory of the children of God. For we know that the whole creation groans and suffers the pains of childbirth together until now. And not only this, but also we ourselves, having the first fruits of the Spirit, even we ourselves groan within ourselves, waiting eagerly for our adoption as sons, the redemption of our body. For in hope we have been saved, but hope that is seen is not hope; for who hopes for what he already sees? But if we hope for what we do not see, with perseverance we wait eagerly for it.” (Rom 8:18-25)

“Therefore we do not lose heart, but though our outer man is decaying, yet our inner man is being renewed day by day. For momentary, light affliction is producing for us an eternal weight of glory far beyond all comparison, while we look not at the things which are seen, but at the things which are not seen; for the things which are seen are temporal, but the things which are not seen are eternal.” (2 Cor 4:16-18)

Tonight, we’ll gather for prayer as a church family. I’m praying especially for those in Ukraine and California who have been driven from their homes. I’m praying they’ll find their heart’s true home in Christ and the hope of heaven. – Pastor Tim

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