Joy in Suffering?

If you’ve followed me for a while, you’ve probably noticed: I’ve gone missing. Heartache and pain struck our family last fall and I clammed up. For me, it’s chronic, debilitating physical pain. For my husband, a diagnosis that’s not good.

There’s all kinds of pain and suffering. Physical, emotional, spiritual, relational – not to mention that inflicted by outside circumstances like disasters, accidents, food insecurity, financial insecurity, persecution, and a long list I can’t begin to fathom. At any given time, our lives are touched by it. Just sometimes, it seems overwhelming.

I’ve read books and articles, listened to podcasts. There were no easy answers. I was/am discouraged. Because…I’m human. But here’s what we need to know: we live in a broken world. Wasn’t supposed to be this way. In the beginning: “Then God looked over all he had made, and He saw that it was very good!” (Genesis 1:31 NLT)

Dosen’t feel so good right now. How about you? Are you currently in the midst of a trial that blindsided you? I think it helps to know we’re not alone. At times, I have needed to know someone out there was experiencing something similar to me. Why that helps, I don’t know. Perhaps because it eases the pain of the isolation that often goes hand-in-hand with suffering.

I don’t have answers, but I can’t lose my hope – and neither should you. “Why are you downcast, O my soul? Why the unease within me? Put your hope in God, for I will yet praise Him, my Savior and my God.” (Psalm 43:5 BSB)

My website is: Paris Renae, Living Braver. I thought I knew what that meant ten years ago when I started writing. Hindsight now shows me I didn’t have a clue. Perhaps my focus, as you join me here, is going to shift a bit. It used to be: keeping an eternal perspective. Because those who know Jesus do have a glorious forever ahead. I don’t want to lose sight of that – for your sake and mine – but we are here and now. How do we manage until our someday?

If you are suffering long-term or even just beginning a journey, would you comment briefly and let me know how I can pray for your situation? Sometimes, for myself, all I can utter is: Lord, Help. But what if a community developed of us crying out to our Creator for each other? Our prayers don’t fall on deaf ears. A united, faithful, and hopeful community of prayer sufferers can lighten our loads and bring joy.

Oh yes, I did say joy. And I’m determined to find mine again and help you find yours too. “He made heaven and earth, the sea, and everything in them. He keeps every promise forever.” (Psalm 146:6 NLT) Forever – we can rejoice this Easter Sunday – no matter the pain, because someday no more of this.

6 Comments on “Joy in Suffering?

  1. I’m touched by your heartfelt words this morning and while you and your family are struggling, you still are keeping your eye on the bigger picture. Nothing we experience even comes close to the suffering of our Lord Jesus Christ, Thank you for your offer to pray for others. Please pray for me. You are in mine.


    • I will be praying for you, Di, if you want to email me through my site to give me specifics, please do. May His mercies and grace and comfort give you all peace today as you walk this road with Him. In Jesus’ Name Amen


  2. Sorry I haven’t kept up but had company three weeks then have been working at the office this week and maybe next. I really do want to get together with you soon. I’m sorry things have not improved for you or Steve. You are truly going through a rough patch! I will keep you both in my prayers. The Lord never lets us go through anything alone. If there is anything I can do for you please let me. We all hesitate to allow others to help us but that’s what we are here for. You would do it for me! God has placed us here to help one another and be His hands and feet. If there is some particular chore you just can’t manage I can probably do it for you. That’s how a Christian community and family works. Think about it and be encouraged. Love, Becky ________________________________


  3. Oh yes! There is comfort – not only in knowing another/others are going through something totally devastating, but Our LORD will give us what we need and will walk us through this. Thank you for being open and vulnerable with us in sharing your heart. I too am dealing with a devastating disease my husband is battling and the sorrow of watching him deteriorate is more than I can bear at times. But there is lots of grief over the loss of the life I was expecting to experience now and in the years ahead. So I will pray for you and thank you for praying for me.


  4. WELCOME BACK…You have been missed! It would not let me comment the other way so I am responding to email as you suggested.   I love the images!!  Interesting I just finished a Bible study on James….”consider it all joy”….!  It is not always easy to find the joy in trials/suffering.  That’s when I rely on scriptures like Psalm 43:5 and Psalm 51:12…”Restore to me the joy of your salvation….that is really all we need! I like you, live in chronic pain, it can be such a downer at times!! For some strange reason it is comforting to share with someone who understands.  Yet, I do not want anyone else to be in chronic pain that alters their activities of daily living. I am so blessed that you are my dear friend.  One that listens, loves, understands, and prays with me! Love you, Michel


  5. So sorry to hear that things are not so good for you and Steve! Whatever they may be, God knows and I will pray for you both. Hang in there. ❤️


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