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Your Pain Often Reveals God’s Purpose
By Rick Warren

“[God] comforts us in all our troubles so that we can comfort others . . . Even when we are weighed down with troubles, it is for your comfort and salvation! For when we ourselves are comforted, we will certainly comfort you. Then you can patiently endure the same things we suffer.” 2 Corinthians 1:4, 6 (NLT)

Your pain often reveals God’s purpose for you. God never wastes a hurt!

If you’ve gone through a hurt, God wants you to help other people going through that same hurt. He can use the problems in your life to give you a ministry to others. In fact, the very thing that you’re most ashamed of or that you resent the most could become your greatest ministry.

Who can better help somebody going through a bankruptcy than somebody who went through a bankruptcy? Who can better help somebody struggling with an addiction than somebody who’s struggled with an addiction? Who can better help somebody who’s lost a child than somebody who lost a child?

The very thing you hate the most in your life is what God wants to use for good in your life and in the lives of other people.

The Bible says, “[God] comforts us in all our troubles so that we can comfort others . . . Even when we are weighed down with troubles, it is for your comfort and salvation! For when we ourselves are comforted, we will certainly comfort you. Then you can patiently endure the same things we suffer” (2 Corinthians 1:4, 6 NLT).

This is called redemptive suffering—when God eventually uses the pain you’ve gone through for the benefit of others.

This is what Jesus did. When Jesus died on the cross, he didn’t deserve to die. He went through that pain for your benefit so that you could be saved and go to heaven.

The problems, pain, and suffering in your life have many causes.

Sometimes you bring them on yourself through poor decisions. For example, you presume on the future by buying things you can’t afford; then you go deeply in debt and eventually lose your house. In that situation, you can’t say, “God, why did you let me lose my house?” You can’t blame God for your bad choices.

But in some of your problems, you’re innocent. You’ve been hurt by the pain, stupidity, and sins of other people.

But no matter the source of your pain, God can redeem it. He can bring you through a time of suffering and let you help other people on the other side.

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This devotional © 2018 by Rick Warren. All rights reserved. Used by permission.

You can listen to Rick Warren on OnePlace.com.