How does one make sense of the scriptures where it says God will inflict trouble or suffering on us? Lisa shares her perspective of this in her own life of chronic illness and pain.
“Come, let us return to the Lord. He has torn us to pieces but He will heal us; He has injured us but He will bind up our wounds.” (Hosea 6:1)
This is a difficult verse to swallow when we are feeling beaten down. He tore us to pieces? He has injured us? On purpose?! Is this the loving God we worship? Yes. It is.
For a variety of reasons outside of my illness, this has been the most difficult season in my life. Someone recently gave me a kind compliment on my endurance and faith and I replied “It is called ‘face-plant faith’ when you are on your knees–spiritually–every moment.”
So, of all the scriptures, why does this one bring me comfort? Because it reminds me God is still in control. We don’t worship a God who specializes in leftovers, making something out of satan’s mess. He can take our sins, our messed up life and make miracles, but do we really believe He is at the mercy of waiting for the evil one to play his games so that God has something to build on?
No. He knew before we were born that our life would have seasons of joy and seasons of tears and He knew every cause of them. God is much more interested in cleaning us out than cleaning us up. He debrides us, layer by layer by layer.
And it hurts. It hurts more than anything we will ever go through. But we gradually depend on less on our own strength and more of His. The layers of sin get skimmed off in the fire and yet we still do not get burned. He may withdraw His protection at times, but never His presence.
It is hard to read scriptures about God not just allowing pain, but sometimes inflicting it. But don’t forget He is our Father. No pain is without a purpose. And He can only truly heal our heart by getting rid of the sin from the inside out.
About the author:
Lisa Copen is the founder of Rest Ministries and she lives in San Diego with her husband and son. She has been busy this fall season taking advantage of the extra IVs of steroids she received with her regular medications and is enjoying the moments but mentally preparing for the crash. You can see the books she has written, including, Why Can’t I Make People Understand? at the Rest Ministries shop.
I hope you will take a moment to watch the video I just made in this very topic, as I share more about the emotions behind this topic and my personal experience with debridement that helped me understand this principle. If you wonder why God allows us to suffer, this is one more angle to better understand the point of the pain. -Lisa