2 Corinthians 1:9,

“In fact, we expected to die. But as a result, we stopped relying on ourselves and learned to rely ONLY ON GOD, who raises the dead.”

Purpose For Suffering

We don’t know the exact nature of the trouble Paul was dealing with, but whatever the problem was, the outlook was bleak. It was so intense Paul said We EXPECTED to die.” God had allowed His servants to be brought to this place of extremity, where there was no human way out. What was the point? The point was to teach them not to rely upon their own resources, but upon the power of God.
British evangelist, pastor and author, Alan Redpath, wrote: “There is nothing, no circumstance, no trouble, no testing that can ever touch me until, first of all, it has come past God, and past Jesus Christ, right through to me. If it has come that far, it has come with a great purpose.”
The story of Joseph is a great example of this. He was forced to contend with a situation he did not ask for or deserve. His own brothers ambushed him, sold him into slavery and then told his father he was dead so no one would look for him. Joseph could have felt abandoned by God hopeless, bitter and depressed. But he submits himself to God, trusting in His goodness. In the end, he slowly came to understand that the purposes of God are not always clear in the moment. He waited, and trusted, and submitted, knowing that God’s good purposes always prevails. He was able to say to his brothers upon meeting them again many years later in, Genesis 50:20, “You intended to harm me, but God intended it all for good.”
What began as evil, ends with God turning it around for good. The same trust in God’s goodness that Joseph displayed is what makes it possible for us to submit to the hard, dark things God sometimes allows us to experience.
Whatever God allows to happen, we, like Joseph, can give ourselves over to His goodness, with the confidence that our Heavenly Father can, and will use it for good.
 by Corville Peters

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