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On Suffering (and Pre-Suffering)

I wrote this in May 2014 …

What do we do with this?

I also loved this from a more recent blog post on suffering. Jonathan Parnell wrote the post but the quote is attributed to The Pipes.

Suffering is nothing more than the taking away of bad things or good things that the world offers for our enjoyment — reputation, esteem among peers, job, money, spouse, sexual life, children, friends, health, strength, sight, hearing, success, etc.

When these things are taken away (by force or by circumstance or by choice), we suffer. But if we have followed Paul and the teaching of Jesus and have already counted them as loss for the surpassing value of gaining Christ, then we are prepared to suffer.

The part that is crushing, to me, is that little two-word phrase at the end of the parentheses.

By choice.

I’m not sure if I’d rather adopt this attitude and thus, lifestyle, or be able to write like Rutherford (The Great King keeps his wine there…!) but there was a whole host of destruction in the depths of my heart when I encountered these words.

I hope there was in yours, too.