We rejoice in our sufferings, knowing that suffering produces endurance, endurance character, character hope, and hope does not put us to shame, because God’s love has been poured into our hearts through the Holy Spirit. Romans 5:3-5
Scripture awards us a radically unique approach to suffering. Who can find joy looking over the brokenness left in the wake of natural disaster? How is the terminal cancer patient to rejoice in her plight? What parent can peer into the grave of his child and find hope?
Let’s not misunderstand Paul’s words; he’s not looking to find new ways to suffer. Rather he recognizes the reality of our fragmented and crippled world. For us, calamity is reality. Bad stuff is going to happen. This changes nothing of the Lord’s love for you. Your hope is not removed. Your character is strengthened through every trial you endure. Therefore, even in these times, we rejoice. Rejoice that Jesus will not fail you.
Jesus, carry us through the highs and lows of life with joy! Amen.