I know, O LORD, that Your judgments are right, and that in faithfulness you have afflicted me. Psalm 119:75
None of us like pain or affliction, but no-one can read the pages of the Bible without realising that God allows these things in our lives. He allows them in order to purify, change and mature us as people who know and trust Him. Here the Psalmist not only recognises the hand of God in his afflictions, but goes a step further – he says that the afflictions we pass through are a mark of God’s love and faithfulness to us. They are gifts of grace and love, and marks of God’s kindness. Why? Does God enjoy our afflictions? By no means – He weeps with us in our pain. But He has a greater end in view than we do. We see the immediate discomfort, but God sees the things that He can only bestow upon us if our hearts are prepared to receive them. God is preparing us to share His authority and His rule, but most of all to be vessels of His love and mercy to others. God uses various methods to make us vessels of honour in His house – 2 Timothy 2:20-21, but His ultimate goal is always the same – that we should be filled to overflowing with all the goodness and Presence of our wonderful Father.
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