I like the opening introduction to today’s study: “When circumstances are against us, or evil enters our lives, we are able to set our sails of our souls and use even adverse winds. The Christian faith does not offer us exemption from sorrow and pain; what it does offer us is the power not merely to bear it but to use it. The secret of using adverse circumstances to further us is one of life’s greatest secrets. Once we have learned that secret we are unbeatable and unbreakable.”
This introducion is worth reflecting upon for a number of reasons. One, I think it’s important to stress that being a follower of Jesus does not exempt anyone from pain and suffering – we will suffer – as Jesus suffered. Some groups, mainly found in theÂ western world, Â preach a prosperity ‘gospel’, which is false and doomed for disappointment. The view that Christians can avoid pain and suffering in this world is wrong. – any objective reading of scripture will lead you to this conclusion.Â
The second point is that this is not a ‘human’ secret – this understanding comes from the Spirit of Jesus living within us when we invite Jesus to be our Saviour and Commander of our soul. Consequently, I disagree with one possible intrepretation of Selwyn’s words, that this understanding is a human secret for us to learn and to apply to our lives. It is the power of the Holy Spirit working with us – this is not something we can undertake on our own. What do others think?