I recently returned from annual training with my Army National Guard unit at Fort Bragg. It was a tough two weeks out in the field but now I am back home, happy to be back with my family, my friends, and my church. I hope nobody missed me too much here. 😉
If there is one thing I learned at Annual Training that isn’t related to the military, is that we all deal with certain levels of suffering. For some, our suffering is superficial and easy to grasp. This doesn’t mean that it is meaningless–on the contrary. However, for others, pain and suffering is found much deeper underneath the crust of our lives. But one thing is certain, we are all fighting something inside. Some of us are fighting minor battles, while some of us are fighting conflicts the size of epic beasts.
But we are all struggling with something, some sort of pain or suffering underneath who we are–the only difference is how deep underneath our layers our pain and suffering is found. The truth is that the message of the Gospel of Jesus Christ is there for all of us, whether one may be a believer of the Gospel or an unbeliever, the message from God to man found in the Scriptures is there for us all.
Hours before his crucifixion, Jesus prayed to God the Father on our behalf. Jesus stated:
“I have given them your word and the world has hated them, for they are not of the world any more than I am of the world. My prayer is not that you take them out of the world but that you protect them from the evil one. They are not of the world, even as I am not of it. Sanctify them bythe truth; your word is truth.”
John 17: 14-17
In these words Jesus declares that He has gives us the Word of God, the message of the Holy One, to strengthen us, to guide us, to fortify us–to sanctify us. In the sanctifying process of being enveloped by the Word of God, we will gain knowledge and wisdom and power from God, that we may understand the purpose of our suffering and that greater plan that God has in our suffering and in our sanctification by the power of His Spirit.