December: Trials and PainThe devil, things and people being what they are, it is necessary forGod to use the hammer, the file and the furnace in His holy work ofpreparing a saint for true sainthood. It is doubtful whether God canbless a man greatly until He has hurt him deeply.The Root of the Righteous, 157.December 11Trials and Pain: Easter Without Good FridayFor to you it has been granted on behalf of Christ, not only tobelieve in Him, but also to suffer for His sake.--Philippians 1:29...God will crucify without pity those whom He desires to raisewithout measure!...God wants to crucify us from head to foot-making our own powersridiculous and useless--in the desire to raise us without measurefor His glory and for our eternal good....Willingness to suffer for Jesus' sake--this is what we have lostfrom the Christian church. We want our Easter to come without thenecessity of a Good Friday. We forget that before the Redeemercould rise and sing among His brethren He must first bow His headand suffer among His brethren!We forget so easily that in the spiritual life there must be thedarkness of the night before there can be the radiance of thedawn. Before the life of resurrection can be known, there must bethe death that ends the dominion of self. It is a serious but ablessed decision, this willingness to say, "I will follow Him nomatter what the cost. I will take the cross no matter how itcomes!" I Talk Back to the Devil, 96-99."Lord, this morning I come before You on my knees to say, 'I willfollow Him no matter what the cost. I will take the cross nomatter how it comes!' Amen."