Jesus understands

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“For because he himself has suffered when tempted, he is able to help those who are being tempted.” Hebrews 2:18

Really, the entire chapter…but for space, I will just copy the final verse of the chapter since it all seems to be leading there to verse 18.

Jesus understands me. He understands you. He gets what his followers (pilgrims) are going through.

The other day, words from Edward Welch refreshed my soul…well, after I let them sink it.

“Suffering does not oppose love; it is a result of it. One of the grand purposes of human existence is to look more and more like Jesus. This is God’s plan for us. It is one of the greatest gifts he could give. It is evidence that he has brought us into his family. If Jesus learned obedience through suffering, we will too. A path without hardships should cause us to wonder if we really belong to God. The challenge for us is to think as God thinks. In other words, our present thinking must be turned upside-down. We once thought that suffering was to be avoided at all costs; now we must understand that the path to becoming more like Jesus goes through hardship, and it is much better than the path of brief and superficial comfort without Jesus. When we understand this grand purpose, we discover that suffering does not oppose love; it is a result of it (Hebrews 12: 8). We are under the mistaken impression that divine love cannot coexist with human pain. Such thinking is one of Satan’s most effective strategies. It must be attacked with the gospel of grace.” Edward T. Welch

If Jesus learned obedience through suffering, then we will too.

Yes, Welch is right. My challenge is to think like God, or at least try to see my circumstances from His perspective. A perspective which he does (by mercy) give me through his Word.

The path to becoming more like Jesus goes through hardship, and it is much better than the path of brief and superficial comfort without Jesus.

Pain and love go together in God’s world. They seem to be on contrary to one another. They seem to be in direct opposition. Yet, we see it in the gospel. The suffering of Jesus, “for God so loved the world.”

Lord, help me to realize your love is deeper and more complex than I know. Give me a deeper knowledge of you and gird me up with your daily strength so that I can learn obedience…even through suffering.

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