Daily Devotional – 6/9/16 “I’m not ashamed of my suffering!”

Struggle

Sometimes you have to tell folk, if the hell I’ve been through couldn’t defeat me; what makes you think you can! If disease didn’t break me, what gives you the power to think you can? If depression didn’t steal my joy, what makes you think you can? If folk leaving me didn’t destroy me, what makes you think you can? Tell them, I don’t mind you speaking on me but at least let it be truthful. I don’t mind you not liking me but let it be on something you know and not what you heard. Because when you persecute me, I’m blessed. When you torment me, I’m blessed in the process. When you try to scandalize my name, I’m blessed. For the bible tells me in Matthew 5:10, “God blesses those who are persecuted for doing right, for the Kingdom of Heaven is theirs.” This is why you ought to get to a point in your natural life that you tell folk, suffering didn’t shatter me; in fact, my suffering saved me. Yea! Tell them, that pain I endured; it pushed me. That heartbreak, it helped me. That sickness, it strengthened me. Those lies, they lifted me. That betrayal, it blessed me. This divorce, it delivered me. Losing my job, it loosened me. That repossession, it released me. That addiction, it amended me.

Baby, we have to get like Paul and say like 2 Corinthians 12:9, “So now I am glad to boast about my weaknesses, so that the power of Christ can work through me,” for God says, “My grace is all you need. My power works best in weakness.” Suffering isn’t final because it has to end just like everything else. Don’t get mad when folks try to use your suffering against you. Let them talk because afterwards you can say, yea, I’ve suffered but it saved me. How else would you have become sober if it wasn’t for that DUI? How else would you have been delivered from being a whoremonger, if you hadn’t suffered through the many relationships? How else would you have been delivered from drugs if you hadn’t hit rock bottom? How else could you clear your name, if folk had never tried to bring you to shame? How else could you survive if you’ve never suffered? How else could you had become stronger if you’ve never been weak? How else could you enjoy the light if you’ve never been in darkness? How else could you enjoy taking care of your finances if you’ve never been broke? Baby, folk will talk but don’t allow them to use your suffering against you, when your suffering has now gotten you to the place of surviving. For the bible tells me, if I suffer, I shall gain eternal life! Suffering isn’t in vain so stop being victimized by it! 1 Peter 5:10, “And after you have suffered a little while, the God of all grace, who has called you to his eternal glory in Christ, will himself restore, confirm, strengthen, and establish you.” Suffering has a place but take comfort in knowing it comes with God’s amazing grace.

Daily Devotional – 3/14/16 “Side effects”

For the last few weeks, I’ve been dealing with the reoccurrence of carpal tunnel pain. Now, anyone that know me knows I do not take pain medication unless I absolutely have too (I’m good with a few ibuprofens) because I’m usually allergic to it all and it makes me itch something horrible. However, a few days I’ve had to take a pain pill along with a few Benadryl until my doctor appointment this week and this got me to thinking. See, when the pain became bad enough I had to break down and take a pain pill, even though I knew it would make me itch. Why? Well because sometimes we have to endure the side effects simply to get relief. What do I mean? I have to endure the side effects of the pain medication just to get enough relief to go to sleep. We have to endure the attacks of the enemy in order to know we are God’s anointed. We have to push through some pain just to birth our destiny. We have to sacrifice in order to succeed. We have to stumble, sometimes, just to stay sane. We have to put up with the naysayers on the way to getting our blessings. We have to go through surgery, radiation or chemo to get our healing. We have to go through death in order to live again. What’s my point? We all have to deal with some unwelcomed side effects, on this side.

Yea, we deal with the side effects of tears, hurt, confusion and grief after losing a loved one. We deal with the side effects of worry after the diagnosis. We deal with the side effects of pain after being hurt. We deal with the side effects of loneliness after folk walk off. We deal with the enemy in the church right after preaching but oh, somebody shout oh, oh but then after the side effects … we get relief from migraine headaches after the medicine, a diagnosis of cancer remission after the treatment, a new purpose after the pain, a renewed salvation after the sacrifice, a joyful life after all the junk, a blessing after back sliding, a help mate after the hell we’ve been through, peace after all the late night pacing, a testimony after the tears, restoration after the repossession, faithfulness after the foreclosure, a greater anointing after the assault on our life, favor after we’ve fallen a few times, a new beginning after the battle, worthiness after the wandering and mercy after the mess! Yes, we may have some negative side effects but sometimes they are worth the positive effects we’ll feel afterwards! Don’t cast out what you sometimes have to swallow in order to be saved. It may just be the deliverance and breakthrough you’ve been waiting for.

“For it has been granted to you on behalf of Christ not only to believe in him, but also to suffer for him.” Philippians 1:29