The Value of Pain
I reckon that the sufferings of this present time are not worthy to be compared
with the glory which shall be revealed in us. Rom. 8:18.
experience of the apostle John under persecution, there is a lesson of wonderful
strength and comfort for the Christian. God does not prevent the plottings
of wicked men, but He causes their devices to work for good to those who in
trial and conflict maintain their faith and loyalty. Often the gospel laborer
carries on his work amid storms of persecution, bitter opposition, and unjust
reproach. At such times let him remember that the experience to be gained
in the furnace of trial and affliction is worth all the pain it costs. Thus
God brings His children near to Him, that He may show them their weakness
and His strength. He teaches them to lean on Him. Thus He prepares them to
meet emergencies, to fill positions of trust, and to accomplish the great
purpose for which their powers were given them.
ages God’s appointed witnesses have exposed themselves to reproach and
persecution for the truth’s sake. Joseph was maligned and persecuted
because he preserved his virtue and integrity. David, the chosen messenger
of God, was hunted like a beast of prey by his enemies. Daniel was cast into
a den of lions because he was true to his allegiance to heaven. Job was deprived
of his worldly possessions, and so afflicted in body that he was abhorred
by his relatives and friends; yet he maintained his integrity.
could not be deterred from speaking the words that God had given him to speak;
and his testimony so enraged the king and princes that he was cast into a
loathsome pit. Stephen was stoned because he preached Christ and Him crucified.
Paul was imprisoned, beaten with rods, stoned, and finally put to death because
he was a faithful messenger for God to the Gentiles. And John was banished
to the Isle of Patmos “for the word of God, and for the testimony of
of human steadfastness bear witness to the faithfulness of God’s promises—of
His abiding presence and sustaining grace. They testify to the power of faith
to withstand the powers of the world. . . .
witness to the power of One mightier than Satan. . . . Through trial and persecution
the glory—the character—of God is revealed in His chosen ones.
The believers in Christ, hated and persecuted by the world, are educated and
disciplined in the school of Christ. On earth they walk in narrow paths; they
are purified in the furnace of affliction.
Our Father Cares, pp. 310, 311.