Pain or Pleasure

I watched John Piper's message to inmates at Angola prison this morning. Amazing! In the middle of the Q&A Dr. Piper was asked about getting out of prison and if that would basically be the proof of God's love. Piper responded that "Satan uses two things to kill our faith, pain and pleasure, and pleasure is far more destructive". It led me to think about the pain in our lives. Pain is real, but why would God allow it and what is it's purpose? 

So I want to encourage you. The most wonderful blessing that is most overlooked is the grace of pain. No one has ever been so thoroughly humbled, more completely loved, or dramatically changed, than through valleys of pain. Period. The goal of life is not pain avoidance. When we aim to avoid pain we can miss coming to grips with our own brokenness and sin, become proud, and never dive into the pool of God's grace and power.

The pain we feel today, or will feel in the future, may be the result of personal sin or lack of judgment, but it is ALWAYS an invitation to be cleansed, encouraged, and changed by God. Never let pain go to waste. Never!

Romans 5:1-5