Video: A Song for the Suffering (with John Piper)
I come, God, I come
Return to the Lord
The one who’s broken
The one who’s torn me apart
You strike down to bind me up
You say You do it all in love
That I might know You in Your suffering
Though You slay me
Yet I will praise You
Though You take from me
I will bless Your name
Though You ruin me
Still I will worship
Sing a song to the One who’s all I need
My heart and flesh may fail
The earth below give way
But with my eyes, with my eyes I’ll see the Lord
Lifted high on that day
Behold, the Lamb that was slain
And I’ll know every tear was worth it all
Though tonight I’m crying out
Let this cup pass from me now
You’re still all that I need
You’re enough for me
You’re enough for me
I’m quite amazed by this song by Shane & Shane, it really hit me as I heard it tonight for the first time. In a similar vein to Laura Story’s Blessings and Casting Crown’s Praise You In This Storm, I’m always amazed and encouraged when I remember that Christians always have a reason to praise God, even in the darkest of times.
Or maybe, especially in the darkest of times.
So, I wouldn’t say I’m suffering badly – after all, no one I know has died, I am not forced to defend my faith or risk being beheaded, I have no major illnesses that I know of. But I do, on occasion, feel a little neglected by God. I wonder if he hears the cries of my heart, and I wonder if he knows how difficult it is to make the right choices sometimes. But though this is not quite how I would like my life to be right now, I will still bless his name.
And finally, a reminder from John Piper (excerpts from the above video):
“Not only is all your affliction momentary, not only is all your affliction light in comparison to eternity and the glory there. But all of it is totally meaningful. Every millisecond of your pain, from the fallen nature or fallen man, every millisecond of your misery in the path of obedience is producing a peculiar glory you will get because of that.
I don’t care if it was cancer or criticism. I don’t care if it was slander or sickness. It wasn’t meaningless. It’s doing something! It’s not meaningless.
…Therefore, therefore, do not lose heart. But take these truths and day by day focus on them. Preach them to yourself every morning. Get alone with God and preach his word into your mind until your heart sings with confidence that you are new and cared for.”