After you have suffered awhile…

Life is full of events or moments, these moments or events we experience could be either good moments or bad moments. I have not met anyone whose life’s experience has always been the same, it changes day in and out. The different series of events we encounter in life is what defines the beauty of our life stories.

In today’s devotion,  we will look at the letter written by Apostle Peter to the dispersed Christians in the northern part of Asia minor. An area that was predominantly ruled by the Roman empire in that era. During that time, the Christians in that area were facing persecution and with that, Peter wrote a letter to his brothers and sisters to encourage them in the time of their sufferings.

10 But may[a] the God of all grace, who called us[b] to His eternal glory by Christ Jesus, after you have suffered a while, perfect, establish, strengthen, and settle you. – 1 Peter 5:10 (NKJV)

In this scripture verse, Peter highlights the outcomes of enduring sufferings for Christ sake.  He does this by pointing out four forms of graces that a believer receives as an outcome in suffering for Christ. These graces are that God will Perfect, Establish, Strengthen and Settle you. It is my prayer that we allow the words of Peter as inspired by the Holy Spirit to refresh our souls as we face our share of sufferings in this life.

Beloved, hold unto Christ as after this moment of suffering have passed, Christ will PERFECT you. The sufferings we face in life challenges our faith in Christ. To be perfect after you suffered in my understanding is to continue to retain your completeness in Christ. In Christ, we are whole and made complete. When suffering overcomes us, we lose hope in God, but when we stand in faith to overcome the suffering we draw our wholeness from Christ. It is in Him alone that we are made PERFECT.

The seed takes root in the ground before we see the stem spring to form a plant. The word of God when we first hear it is like a seed sown in our heart, the sufferings that we face are the unfavorable conditions that can cause the word from not taking root. It is our cautious and conscious effort to guard the word in our heart by putting our faith in God that will allow the word of God to take root in our heart. After we have suffered awhile, when these unfavorable conditions pass away, the word of God will be ESTABLISHED in our hearts. Our faith in God will be established as we experience the faithfulness of His word prevail in our lives.

In times of suffering,  we exert energy physically, spiritually and emotionally. We become tired and weary. But similar to working out, we gain new vitality after the suffering has passed. We gain endurance, we become stronger than before. Christ makes us strong in Him when we stand with Him in our suffering. Christ gives STRENGTH to the weak. Isaiah 40:31 reminds us of this truth that God renews our strength when we get weary. New strength is always found in every suffering because God gives it.

Restoration is another word that comes to mind when I think of SETTLE. In suffering, we lose a lot, some lose loved ones, physical resources, and all kinds of losses one can think of. But God’s word promises that we will be restored in fullness. Christ Jesus will settle us in more abundance than we can ever think or imagine.

I pray that today, these refreshing words from the verse in 1 Peter 5:10 has quickened your spirit to press on in abiding in Jesus Christ. The perfection, establishment, strength, and restoration are graces we are bound to receive if we continue to remain in Him. I pray that the grace of God avails for you in whatever circumstance you are facing in your life. You are not facing it alone, Christ is with you and He wants you to hold unto Him to be able to release his perfection and strength into your life.  May God bless you and strengthen you and in all you do so that you will bring Him glory and honor forever. Amen.

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