suffering in our stories

“Consequently, gospel stories always have suffering in them.  American Christianity has an allergic reaction to this part of the gospel.  We’d love to hear about God’s love for us, but suffering doesn’t mesh with our right to “the pursuit of happiness.”  so we pray to escape a gospel story, when that is the best gift the Father can give us.  When I was sitting on the plane thinking, everything has gone wrong, that was the point when everything ws going right.  That’s how love works.

The father wants to draw us into the story of his Son.  He doesn’t have a better story to tell, so he keeps retelling it in our lives.  As we reenact the gospel, we are drawn into a strange kind of fellowship.  The taste of Christ is so good that the apostle Paul told the Philippians that he wanted to know “the fellowship of sharing in (Jesus’) sufferings”.  It was Paul’s prayer.”

-Paul Miller, A Praying Life

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