Re:Verse reading–Matthew 26:36-46 (day six)
Often, the last thing we want to hear when we face any kind of suffering is “it must be God’s will.” Although it is meant to console, it often never does. Remember Job’s friends, they were far better off just listening or grieving with him, but they just had to try to make sense of his suffering by offering all the reasons God would allow it. Just listen is certainly good advice for us too when consoling a friend, but notice Jesus’ words leading up to his darkest hour, “not my will, but yours be done.” In his great distress (more than we can possibly imagine) it was confidence in His Father’s will that gave him hope; it sustained him. The writer of Hebrews would even declare, “For the joy set before him, he endured the cross.” That kind of joy, in the face of great suffering, could only come to Jesus if he could see through it to behold the purpose’s of his Father on the other side of it. His suffering wasn’t the result of faithlessness, nor was it arbitrary (for no reason at all); no, it was heavy with purpose.
We live in a world broken by the corruption of sin, and we feel it, some of us more than others, but we can be certain of this, that just as Jesus’ suffering (and resurrection) brought new life to the world, so our suffering can yield the same in lives around us. Purpose.