Pain and Gain
Romans 8:28 - “And we know that God causes everything to work together for the good of those who love God and are called according to his purpose for them.”
Grief, loss, and pain are an inevitable part of life. But did you know that God uses our grief to help us grow? He does it in three ways.
First, God uses pain to get our attention. C. S. Lewis wrote, “God whispers to us in our pleasure, but he shouts to us in our pain.” Pain is God’s megaphone. We rarely change when we see the light. We change when we feel the heat. Proverbs 20:30 says, “Sometimes it takes a painful experience to make us change our ways”
Second, he brings good out of bad. When you experience a loss, it’s an opportunity to grow in character. You can’t control the pain you go through, but you can decide whether it’s going to make you bitter or better. You decide whether it’s going to be a stepping stone or a stumbling block. You have to remember that even in your pain, God is working for your good.
Third, God prepares us for eternity.The Bible says in 2 Corinthians 4:17-18, “These troubles are getting us ready for an eternal glory that will make all our troubles seem like nothing.....”. You’ve probably heard me say before that you’re not taking your car to Heaven. You’re not taking your clothes to Heaven; you’re not taking your career to Heaven. But you are taking your character with you.
God’s more interested in your character development than in your comfort. Why? Because you can get comfortable in Heaven, but this is the get-ready stage. This is the learning stage. This is the warm-up act. Your troubles here on Earth are getting you ready for an eternal glory. That’s a comfort. When you’re in pain, you need to ask, “What is God doing?” Is he trying to get your attention? Is he trying to bring good out of bad? Is he preparing your character for Heaven?