The Four Whys of Pain

This entry is part 63 of 63 in the series Being, Knowing, and Doing

The Spiritual Renewal Card Collection is a tool that can help us practice the presence of God throughout the day. Each card reminds us of spiritual truths and helps us infuse our hearts and our minds with God’s Word so that we can remember our identity in Christ. After reviewing each of these cards, Ken looks at the final card, “The Four Whys of Pain.”

The Why of Grumbling

This is our most common response to pain and adversity. It is the least helpful response, for we assume that there can be no good reason for the suffering we face. But there is a good reason, and to lose sight of that is to lose sight of the goodness and glory of God. After all, our perspective is limited, but God’s is not. Suffering often strips us of the illusion of control, and we respond in anger against God.

When we respond in this way, we need to meditate on the sovereignty and grace of God. He is always in control, and He has our best interests at heart. We do not know the future, and we cannot control even five seconds of our lives. But God has a purpose in all things, including suffering. Everything will work out for our good and His glory.

The Why of Grief

The Why of Grief is an honest expression of our emotions. The Psalms are full of these kinds of laments, crying out to God in times of deep distress and despair.

One of the ways we work through grief is remembering God’s faithfulness over time. We can trust Him in the present moment because of His works in the past. While our circumstances change, God does not. His past provision and future promises guide us in our grief.

The Why of Guidance

God has allowed hardship to come to us for a reason. When we pray the Why of Guidance, we ask God to develop our character through adversity. We seek His help in the circumstances we face, drawing closer to Him because of the trials. After all, adversity shapes who we are. When we ask for insight in the midst of it, God is faithful to guide us.

The Why of Gratitude

Although this is the least common response, it is the most helpful. When we have an eternal perspective, even in the midst of adversity we can say, “How have you been so good to me, God?” This is the choice to focus on the truth, being grateful for all that God has done for us. When we pray prayers of thanksgiving and adoration, our perspective centers on God and not on our circumstances.

Watch part 63 of the series Being, Knowing & Doing: How Godly Principles Strategically Affect Men’s Everyday Lives. This teaching normally takes place Friday mornings but is being taught virtually during closings related to COVID-19.

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