Letting Christ Transform You From The Inside Out
As a result of all I had experienced during my miscarriage (See Article), I pursued more in depth Bible Study on the topics of pain, suffering and God's emotions.
Here's what I learned:
God Personally Feels My Pain.
God is not emotionless. He has given us all the emotions that he also possesses. We are made in His Image, however diseased a reproduction we might seem. Here are some example where God showed emotion in the Bible:
By allowing me to go through hardship, he is exposing Himself to MORE pain, since He personally FEELS my pain. Thus, God is feeling the pain of every person that dealt with 911. He is feeling the pain of every person who was involved in the Tsunami in indonesia. He feels the pain of every person who has lost a loved one in a bomb. He holds the hand of every cancer victim. He is present in their lives….right next to them.
God is Not the Author of Evil, Satan is.
Why does God allow pain, natural disasters, personal injury, and injustice. I don't believe that God is the author of evil. In fact, it was because our ancestors, Adam and Eve, gave Satan all their authority over the earth, that we have miscarriages and disasters! They did this when they chose to trust Satan over God. That was the day Satan became their "father". God "proclaimed" the curse over all creation and reproduction on that day. He didn't CAUSE the curse; Rather, he equipped them by telling them what their new life would be under Satan's rule. Thus, no surprises!
The Book of Job also shows that God is not the author of evil. It shows that Satan was behind all the suffering that Job went through. Even so, Satan had to ask God for permission. And, I wonder, why would God give him permission? I now see that it is for the greater good - either my personal character growth OR the increase of the range of people I can empathize with.
Why Waste My Pain? Let it Produce "Connection" With Others and "Empathy" in Me.
God can "redeem" any situation and make it a "growth experience" that leads to "connection with others" vs. a "useless experience" that leads to "isolation from others". Isaiah 55 says that "God's ways are higher that our ways." He knows what types of suffering have the potential to produce "empathy" in me. These can equip me to be His hands and heart and arms to someone who is in need. If I look at my hardships as ways that I can connect with others going through the same hardships, then my pain won't have been wasted. Somehow, my sufferings can produce a greater capacity for LOVE in me. The Apostle Paul stated it this way,
Philippians 3:10 - I want to know Christ and the power of his resurrection and the fellowship of sharing in his sufferings, becoming like him in his death, and so, somehow, to attain to the resurrection from the dead.
God is Actively Working in My Circumstances and Life To Bring Me Closer To Him.
He knows exactly what type of life will work best with the personality he uniquely envisioned for me when he created me. He even has a vision for what role I will serve in the New Jerusalem someday, the heavenly city.
Acts 17:24-26 (paraphrased) - "The God who made the world and everything in it is not like the idols fashioned by human hands. He does not live in buildings. He does not need anything from us. Instead, He chooses to give to us. He chose to give us life and breath and everything else. From one man he created the whole world. He determined where we would live and what time period we would live in. He did this so that we would reach out to Him and find a relationship Him."
God Took the CROSS, and Instrument of Death, and Transformed It Into An Instrument of Life
Tragedy, Sickness, Natural Disasters – will get my attention and scare me. However, God’s kindness, closeness, and loving touch are what have truly motivated me to change my perspective on something. The cross was a tragedy. It got people’s attention. Yet, when they contemplated why the tragedy occurred, and how precious they were to Christ that he would CHOOSE to leave his palace in heaven and die like this for them, they were changed from within. They had a DESIRE and RESOLVE to turn away from anything that wasn’t part of God’s will for them and turn to Christ (God in the flesh) as the only ONE to whom they would give their complete allegiance to.