Acts 5:40-42 ESV
And when they had called in the apostles, they beat them and charged them not to speak in the name of Jesus, and let them go. Then they left the presence of the council, rejoicing that they were counted worthy to suffer dishonor for the name. And every day, in the temple and from house to house, they did not cease teaching and preaching Jesus as the Christ.
It has been said, “God doesn’t simply want us to feel good. He wants us to be good. And very often the road to being good involves not feeling good.”
In John 16:33 Jesus said, “I have said these things to you, that in me you may have peace. In the world you will have tribulation. But take heart; I have overcome the world.”
We are promised tribulation. We are promised suffering. Suffering can be embraced as a wind of advancement or suffering can be embraced as a wind of retreat. The choice is yours to make. If you choose to retreat, then you will need no armor. If you choose to advance through it, then God has the power you need to do so.
In Acts 5 Peter and the apostles suffering pressed them forward and not backwards
1. They were beaten and charged to not speak in the name of Jesus anymore (A wounding of the flesh and a wounding of the spirit)
2. They rejoiced that they were counted worthy to suffer dishonor for the name
3. They daily taught in the temple and from house to house, preaching Jesus
They could live through suffering because they had a view that looked higher than the suffering right in front of them. Suffering becomes beautiful when you look up, around and down and realize you are following Jesus.
The eyes of suffering see clearer when they look forward at the kingdom to come, instead of backwards at the suffering it takes to get there.
Out of the Darkness
Out of the dark forbidding soil The pure white lilies grow.
Out of the black and murky clouds, Descends the stainless snow.
Out of the crawling earth-bound worm A butterfly is born. Out of the somber shrouded night, Behold! A golden morn!
Out of the pain and stress of life, The peace of God pours down.
Out of the nails — the spear — the cross, Redemption — and a crown!