By Samuel Mathai
Today's Scripture: Mark 14:35-37
Central Thought: God will fulfill in our lives His eternal plan even through suffering, if we allow Him to do so.
It is only human to want to be free from the cross, but it is divine to be willing to bear the suffering of the cross. Paul spoke to the believers in Philippi "For it has been granted to you that for the sake of Christ you should not only believe in him but also suffer for his sake" (Philippians 1:29). We can be confident that if there is a thorn, there is also a throne. God's purpose of tribulation for the believer is to bring about perseverance, proven character, and hope (Romans 5:3-4). Peter assured fourfold results of suffering, when he said "And after you have suffered a little while, the God of all grace, who has called you to his eternal glory in Christ, will Himself restore, confirm, strengthen, and establish you" (1 Peter 5:10).
When I was young, a godly preacher said something that has greatly helped me in my life. He said that it was possible for God to remove the cup (the Cross) from the hand of Jesus Christ. Consider what our destiny would be if God had removed the cup from Jesus. What about salvation for the forgiveness of sins? What about the bride of Christ? What about the fulfillment of the eternal plan and purpose of God? There would be no Church, no way of salvation. God works everything (even sufferings) for good to those who are called by Him for His purpose. We need to allow His will--not ours--to be done in our lives.
Devotional Prayer: Lord, thank You for the trials of life. Help me to submit completely to You and Your plan regardless of the circumstances through which You may lead me.
Today's Bible Reading: Numbers 11:24-13:33; Mark 14:22-52; Psalm 52:1-9; Proverbs 11:1-3