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  • Writer's pictureDavid and Marilynn Chadwick

Overcoming Suffering: Practice God's Presence

We are completing our two week study on suffering. This final point on suffering is one of the greatest keys I have found to overcoming suffering: have a constant awareness of the thereness of God. The presence of God changes everything. God is our refuge and strength. He is described as an ever present help in times of trouble (Psalm 46:1). He is with us in the pain. His presence is the present. And Jesus is fully present in the moment of pain. When you pass through the waters, God is with you. The rivers will not overwhelm you. The fires will not burn you. “The Lord your God, the Holy One of Israel, your Savior” is with you and for you (Isaiah 43:2-3). Jesus promised he would be with us until he returns (Matthew 28:20). He promised never to leave us nor forsake us (Hebrews 13:5). Isaiah 64:8 says that God is the potter and we are clay. He can mold our pain for gain. In fact, the wonder and mystery of grace is that Jesus takes all of our bad and gives us all of his good. So, where we have pain, he offers healing. Where we are afraid, he gives peace. Where we feel defeated, he gives victory. When we are weak, we are actually strong (2 Corinthians 12:10). God promises vindication and victory in all things (Isaiah 54:17). Believe him. Even when you don’t feel like it. Choose to say, “I trust you, my Lord.” My dear friend Travis Greene has a song called “Watch Him Turn It.” The lyrics say, “Stand still. Watch him turn it. The devil comes to steal, kill, and destroy. But we serve a God who does much more than we could ever imagine. Whatever happens, it’s working. He’s turning it around right now. Watch him work.” I would encourage you to take these truths to heart amidst your suffering and pain. Believe. Trust. Seek Jesus’s constant presence. Have awareness of the thereness. And watch our great God work.

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