God did not exclude Himself from human suffering

Published 8:41 am Wednesday, January 12, 2022

From the writings of the Rev. Billy Graham

Dear Rev. Graham: If Jesus sits on His heavenly throne how can he possibly understand the immense suffering that people are experiencing in the here and now? — S.S.

Dear S.S.: Jesus suffered on the cross more than any other person in human history. The details of how He suffered were predicted in the prophecies of the Old Testament. Yet He came down from His heavenly throne to suffer with mankind, and He did it all the way to the cross.
God is not blind. He knows about our sufferings on Earth, and He knows our pain. Our sufferings may be hard to bear, but they teach us important lessons, and we must learn to put our every care into His hands, for He helps us carry our cross of suffering.
There is self-denial when bearing a cross. We see it every day in heart-wrenching stories. But God did not exclude Himself from human suffering. He became man — the Person of Christ — and shared with us all there is to share.
As long as we look only at our circumstances, life will be very hard. We must learn to lift our eyes beyond our circumstances and to fix them on Jesus, and take comfort in the fact that He does indeed understand our suffering. When He was hanging on the cross He wasn’t thinking of Himself; He was thinking of mankind, past, present, and future. If we have our eyes upon ourselves, our problems, and our pain, we cannot lift our eyes upward. In the face of persecution and opposition, Jesus went about doing good; we must do the same.
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(This column is based on the words and writings of the late Rev. Billy Graham.)