How Kind

06:14

 

When you sit on this lyric and reflect, what are the things in you that pain has changed? How has going through painful moments transformed your life? 

I am beginning to fully comprehend that I have my own race set before me, my own lane unique to me even if it may look similar to another’s. I have my own cross to bear, my own problems that I must overcome through endurance, as Christ endured and overcame the cross. 

Many people were crucified in Jesus’s time, but none had his burden of responsibility. But he endured the abandonment, mockery; being stripped naked, ostracized, villainized, and shouldering the burden of humanity’s sin. Through all this, he did not lose sight of what he was doing, and why he was doing it. He didn’t allow the shame of his experience to keep him from fulfilling his purpose.  He despised shame; he looked at shame and decided that the joy to be experienced was greater than the shame experienced. He despised shame; he called it powerless, worthless and beneath him*. For this reason, he was able to endure to fulfill his purpose.

What does that have to do with pain changing you? Jesus love for us was greater than the suffering of the cross. Our pain cannot be greater than the promise and joy that is set before us, on earth and eternity. As a Christian, the Word reminds me that I share in the suffering of Christ. I mustn’t forget that the journey of a Christian will have suffering, suffering because I proclaim the gospel, and suffering because I am a sinful being and I reside in a sinful world. I can’t escape suffering, whether directly or vicariously. Yet, all in all, I must endure it.

But in Christ nothing goes to waste.

Pain has helped me turn to God, when I was not walking in his ways. He allowed suffering and opened my eyes that what I was looking for could not be supplied by any human being. In order to understand the world, I have to come out of it, come high where he is, and see everything around me through His word and his spirit, rather than through my human understanding.  The same way that Jesus went through suffering, and had people mocking him that if he was truly the son of God, why not save himself. They could not and did not perceive what His suffering entailed, so too, I must discern through the Spirit the purpose of what I go through, rather than despise it as do those who lack understanding. 

Just as Jesus was not deterred by the cross and the shame that came with it, but remained focused, faithful to the end; I, too, must follow that example, remain focused and faithful in the work that is set before me.

And all this pain is to help me, transform me to be Christ-like; Christ-like in my responses, Christ-like in my endurance, Christ-like in my dependence on God, Christ-like in my faith. 

 

And It’s a continual process. Sometimes I forget; I fall down, and allow the burden of my cross and the shame that comes with it to stagnate my feet. But He remains faithful to pull me out of my own pain and give me hope to press on. In pressing on I am made bolder, stronger, able to endure all things, changing to fully reflect His image and likeness. 

 **

 

*https://www.desiringgod.org/articles/what-does-it-mean-for-jesus-to-despise-shame

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