Are You Allowing Illegitimate Suffering into Your Life?
I’m not buying it. In fact, when I saw the message, “Finish the fight” on a tee-shirt last summer, I started worshiping my Jesus. He went to the cross and made full payment. He fought the entire battle for man and He overcame! Jesus is enthroned in heaven, and God has put everything under His authority. No title exists nor ever will exist that isn’t already under His gloriously scarred feet (See Ephesians 1:20-22)! Hallelujah! The Lamb has overcome! Heaven celebrates extravagantly as a result (See Revelation 5)!
Faith in Jesus means lavish benefits. I belong to a new bloodline. A victorious one.
Praise the Lord, O my soul: all my inmost being, praise His holy name. Praise the Lord, O my soul, and forget not all His benefits- who forgives all your sins and heals all your diseases, who redeems your life from the pit and crowns you with love and compassion, who satisfies your desires with good things so that your youth is renewed like the eagle’s (Psalm 103:1-5).
All these benefits I have received and continue to enjoy as a co-heir with Christ. Being God’s child does bring great privilege, but it also includes suffering. “Now if we are children, then we are heirs- heirs of God and co-heirs with Christ, if indeed we share in His sufferings in order that we may also share in His glory” (Romans 8:17). Here is my approach to this truth: “Show me, Father, the sufferings of my Lord, and I will embrace them fully; however, keep me from accepting illegitimate sufferings.” I’m serious! I don’t want to get duped by the enemy and participate in the delusion. In a furious second he’ll put something from the pit of hell upon me and say I’m suffering like a good Christian!
As I study the yielded life of my Lord and Savior, I discern His sufferings. Now, the obvious suffering of Jesus for the sin of humanity is the Cross, a “once for all” sacrifice, and no human can nor will repeat that sacrifice. Not even Jesus will take up the Cross again, so stop asking Him to do so (often our begging in prayer conveys that our heart refuses to believe He already overcame the world on our behalf; we approach Him with an apparent distrust, as though the Cross was of no effect). Our sin is paid in full. So, what co-heir type of sufferings do we experience?
- sometimes being misunderstood by family when we obediently do what we see the Father doing and speak what we hear the Father speaking (See Matthew 13:54-58)
- persecution (See John 15:18-20)
- physical exertion leading to fatigue in ministering to others (See John 4:4-6)
- hunger in times of fasting (Matthew 4:2)
- sorrow over unbelief of the people (Matthew 23:37-38)
- sorrow over the temporary separation from saints who have departed and gone to heaven (Matthew 14:10,13).
Dear brother and sister in Christ, embrace your identity and your privileges in our Lord Jesus! Reflect the glory of God in this earth by singing Psalm 103 with conviction because your life knows its truth! Run fast from the delusion that there is more fight left undone. Your good fight is the fight to operate in faith and not fall prey to unbelief. Keep the faith by knowing the counsel of God’s Word and by living it out every day!
With love and compassion,