Afflicted by the Hand of God

Solomon shows his distress and how God raised him above it in Lamentations (3:19-21). God’s ordained work of hardship may likely put the follower of Christ at war between unbelief and faith, especially when that struggle is severe.

As Solomon stated his distress and temptation, he showed how God raised him above it. Bad as things may become, as dark as the day may seem, it is of the mercy of God that we are not crushed by His hand. The next several months are a constant reminder for me of a season of great distress; but more than that, it is a reminder of the presence of a trusted God.

God’s compassions, they indeed fail not.

CourtDaySteve

It is in the line of obedient duty or in repenting grief over sin that we taste the joy of hoping and waiting for the salvation of the Lord. Suffering is a good friend as it makes the mind of a follower humble and sober. Matthew Henry argues that affliction is used of God to wean us from the attractions of the flesh. James reminds us that the work of tribulation produces patience, that patience produces experience, and that experience births a hope that does not disappoint.

“Happy shall we be, if we learn to receive affliction as laid upon us by the hand of God.” (1)

Today, if you are found grieving over sinful works or suffering in the line of obedient duty, be pleased to taste to goodness of God. Count it all joy. For in repentance, we see the salvation of the Lord. In suffering, we share in the joy of seeing his mercies new every morning. Therefore, may we hope in him.

22 The LORD’S lovingkindnesses indeed never cease,
For His compassions never fail.
23 They are new every morning;
Great is Your faithfulness.
24 “The LORD is my portion,” says my soul,
“Therefore I have hope in Him.”
25 The LORD is good to those who wait for Him,
To the person who seeks Him.
26 It is good that he waits silently
For the salvation of the LORD.
27 It is good for a man that he should bear
The yoke in his youth.
28 Let him sit alone and be silent
Since He has laid it on him.
29 Let him put his mouth in the dust,
Perhaps there is hope.
30 Let him give his cheek to the smiter,
Let him be filled with reproach.
31 For the Lord will not reject forever,
32 For if He causes grief,
Then He will have compassion
According to His abundant lovingkindness.
33 For He does not afflict willingly
Or grieve the sons of men.
34 To crush under His feet
All the prisoners of the land ,
35 To deprive a man of justice
In the presence of the Most High,
36 To defraud a man in his lawsuit—
Of these things the Lord does not approve .
37 Who is there who speaks and it comes to pass,
Unless the Lord has commanded it?
38 Is it not from the mouth of the Most High
That both good and ill go forth?

Lam 3:22-38 (NASB)

(1) Matthew Henry: Lamentations 3:19-26

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