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Today’s guest post is by Pastor Kip McCormick. Kip is the campus pastor for Cornwall Church Skagit Valley in Mt Vernon, Washington—a satellite campus of Cornwall Church in Bellingham, Washington. Kip earned his Master of Divinity degree while running a youth ministry in Seoul, South Korea. Upon retiring from 28 years of service as an active duty colonel in the Army in 2009, Kip continued pastoring youth and men in the United States. He has a passion for God’s Word and recently completed his PhD in biblical studies. Kip combines his experience as a senior officer in the military, former U.S. Military Academy (West Point) instructor, and intelligence professional with his desire to equip and encourage others in their walk with Christ.
My wife, Linda, was asleep, and I was watching the National Memorial Day concert on the Mall in Washington D.C.
I sat in my living room, lights out, weeping. I didn’t get it. Why was it bothering me so much?
I’d spent a lot of time on the Mall when I was stationed at the Pentagon, then later when I went through attaché training at the Defense Intelligence Agency. I was very familiar with that place. I had seen the monuments, and I had strong memories of the places they represented.
As they played the songs and cut to clips from Afghanistan and Iraq and then back to the faces of wounded warriors, their families, and their kids, I wept.
Right now, you can get R.C. Sproul’s book, Surprised by Suffering, for free! Get your copy.
Suffering often catches us by surprise. One day we are healthy, comfortable, and happy. The next we find ourselves ill or injured, struggling, and distraught. The pain that invades our lives may come from our own suffering or that of a loved one. But no matter the source, we don’t see it coming. All too often, our perplexity prompts us to suspect God of wrongdoing.
R.C. Sproul wrote Surprised by Suffering: The Role of Pain and Death in the Christian Life to help Christians see purpose in pain and sovereignty in suffering.
Surprised by Suffering offers solid biblical counsel and comfort for those undergoing suffering. For those who minister to the suffering, Sproul’s counsel helps believers stand firm with faith in a God who is both loving and good—even in the midst of our deepest sorrows.
Here are some of Sproul’s insights into Matthew 11:28–30:
There have been times in my life when I have uttered foolish prayers. When I have been hard pressed I have cried out to God, “This much and no more, Lord. I can’t handle another setback. One more straw and I’m finished.” It seems that every time I pray like that God puts a fresh load on my back. It is as if He answers my prayer by saying, “Don’t tell Me how much you can bear.”
God knows our limits far better than we do. In one respect we are very much like camels. When the camel’s load is already heavy he doesn’t ask his master for more weight. His knees get a bit wobbly, and he groans beneath the burden, but there is still room for more before his back will break.
The promise of God is not that He will never give us more weight to carry than we want to carry. The promise of God is that He will never put more upon us than we can actually bear.
For more encouraging wisdom from R.C. Sproul, download your free copy of Surprised by Suffering today!
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