Explore
Follow Us

Jesus’ promises about pain

I'm returning from two weeks in Kenya. One night we went to sleep to the sounds of a torrential downpour. In the morning we woke to the news that three children that members of our team had played with the day before had been killed by a mudslide. Nor was that our only encounter with…
By Seth Barnes
By Seth Barnes

I'm returning from two weeks in Kenya.

One night we went to sleep to the sounds of a torrential downpour.

In the morning we woke to the news that three children that members of our team had played with the day before had been killed by a mudslide.

Nor was that our only encounter with death on the trip. On the roadside en route to the airport, police were gathered around a pedestrian who lay still on the pavement, apparently dead. Onesmus, who was seated next to me remarked, "The government doesn't want to build walkways over the highway, so that happens."

And we'd had our own close calls as well. The week before, thieves had broken into the camp where one of our teams was staying. The electric fence, guard, and guard dog did nothing to stop them. They took our team's stuff. Fortunately, though traumatized, the team was OK.

Life in Africa is cheap. And in the midst of all the good things you see, it can leave you scratching your head. "Where is a God?" "Why isn't he protecting us better?" We ask. "Didn't he promise to protect us?"

I was talking about this with one of our racers. And then I remembered Jesus' instructions before he sent his disciples on a journey. He didn't promise there would be no pain, in fact, he promised the opposite. "You will be beaten, betrayed and arrested," he said. "You will be taken before the courts."

"In this world you will have trouble," he said.

But in the midst of the pain, he promised one thing: his presence. He promised to be with us. He said not to worry and not to fear.

It's been a good week, but a week where we wrestled with pain. I'm working on taking Jesus at his word. How about you?

——————–
Kenyan TV news recorded the video about the mudslide above.

Comments (7)

  • Your title drew me in. Your story stopped my heart. Your message speaks strong truth. . . which in the face of tragedy may not lift the spirit, but gives strength to endure. Thanks, Seth.

  • This is what I heard in my spirit after reading this entry:
    Romans 5:1-5 (NKJV)
    Therefore, having been justified by faith, we have[a] peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ, through whom also we have access by faith into this grace in which we stand, and rejoice in hope of the glory of God. And not only that, but we also glory in tribulations, knowing that tribulation produces perseverance; and perseverance, character; and character, hope. Now hope does not disappoint, because the love of God has been poured out in our hearts by the Holy Spirit who was given to us.
    http://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=Romans+5:1-5&version=NKJV

  • I think we all, because no one is unscathed having walked through this world, has wrestled with pain and God. Whenever I was personally attacked, I somehow felt I was a second classed Christian, having been exposed to the “tip-toe through the tulips” doctrines being taught. “All is well, put a smile on your face, and be blessed,” they preach. Real life, even life in Christ, teaches differently, as you said. I would not be alive today, mentally or emotionally, if God, through Jesus, had not been by my side to see me through and to be with me. He is my Rock and my Stay. If we don’t teach the truth, about a God who tells us that we will have tribulation, then when we do, we will definately feel betrayed by Him, and this will shipwreck many people’s faith.

  • You are welcome, Valerie. When you see the clash between the kingdom of light and the kingdom of darkness, I guess it stands to reason that sparks are going to fly.

  • Amen, Patti – we all suffer and all have to navigate our way thru pain. Doing so with Jesus is the only way I survive.

  • This is David,

    I am part of the Body of Christ. We are Christians looking to follow the Lord for His many atypical avenues. Most of us have previous experience meeting in organized
    religion and Lord took us away from that system. Jesus is showing more
    and more His person, who is very different than the one religious
    systems are selling. The Holy Spirit is who teaches us and we became the
    field of action of His teaching. We understand the difference between a
    preacher and a witness. What do you think about this video?

    Thanks!

    David

    MARRYING AND DISMARRYING in the life of the Church

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NDq75PcWX8o

Comments are closed.

Subscribe to Radical Living:

Receive updates on the latest posts as Seth Barnes covers many topics like spiritual formation, what if means to be a christian, how to pray, and more. Radical Living blog is all about a call to excellence in ministry, church, and leadership -as the hands and feet of Jesus.

Seth Barnes

I'm motivated to join God in his global reclamation project. He's on the move, setting his sons and daughters free from their places of captivity. And he's partnering with those of us who have been freed to go and free others.



© Adventures In Missions. All rights reserved. Privacy Policy