So, you want to be a man or woman of God? If so, you are going to be served a cup of pain. You’ll weep because of something much worse than physical pain. I’m speaking of the pain of being bruised and rejected by friends; the pain of parents when children trample their hearts and become strangers to them; the pain between a husband and wife when walls are built up between them.
Oh, the turmoil that comes, the restless, sleepless nights — knowing that God is real, that you are walking in his Spirit, that you are loving Jesus with all that is in you, and yet you are forced to drink a cup of pain.
We cannot run from this cup. We cannot be fooled into thinking that following Jesus is only happiness. Scripture does say our approach to life should be to “count it all joy” (James 1:2). Yet it also says, “Many are the afflictions of the righteous” (Psalm 34:19).
Peter tried to drive away affliction in his flesh. He wielded a sword at Gethsemane, telling Jesus, in effect, “Master, you don’t have to go through this. I’ll keep them at bay while you make your escape.” Many Christians today have the same attitude. They try to turn away afflictions, saying, “I don’t have to face this. My God is a good God!”
I believe God is faithful. But Jesus tells us we cannot run from our cup of pain. He commanded Peter, “Put up your sword. That is not my Father’s way. Live by your sword and you will die by it.” Then he stated, “Shall I not drink the cup which my Father has given me?” (John 18:11).
When you trust the One who is serving you this cup — when you see his purpose behind your suffering — then you are able to drink it. Don’t be afraid, for your Father holds the cup. You are not drinking death but life!
SI Moderator - Greg Gordon