“It was good for me to be afflicted so that I might learn your decrees.” Psalm 119:71.
C.S. Lewis said, “God whispers to us in our pleasures, speaks in our conscience, but shouts in our pains: it is his megaphone to rouse a deaf world.” C.S. Lewis had experienced pains that very few would ever go through. In the school of pain, he wrote a book called “The problem of pain.” The above quotation was from this book. Our author of Psalms 119 talks a lot about afflictions and troubles. Why? He may have experienced so many sufferings that He became skilled in this topic of troubles and sufferings and the results it can produce.
In an ordinary course, people won’t say it was good for them to be afflicted because we don’t like being troubled and afflicted. How can an individual say, “it was good for that I have afflicted?” There is only one way, and that is this – when we understand afflictions is the divine school to know God and experience Him more personally. This is exactly what the writer is talking about. He says in verse 67, “Before I was afflicted, I went astray, but now I obey your word”. You see the connection here. He is saying before the sufferings or troubles, I was going with my agenda in my own paths. I was leading life to fulfill my own desires. I was on my road. Now because of afflictions, I learned to obey your Word. Now I am on His way. You see the troubles and hardships does not take much time. It can appear so quickly and suddenly. Now due to afflictions, he abandoned his own ways and set his mind to walk in His ways and plans -to obey the Word of God. Through afflictions, he understood that God has another far better plan for him.
Do you know, though he allows afflictions, his faithfulness remains stronger in the middle of your troubles? It is then only we learn the character of God and how trustworthy He is. It is through our sufferings and difficulties that we taste the love and power of God. His power truly comes perfect and victorious in our weakness. Paul says in 2 Corinthians 12:9, “But he said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.” Therefore I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses, so that Christ’s power may rest on me.”
Throughout history, God’s grace, power, and faithfulness sustained His people during fiery trials. Moreover, they learned God’s decrees and character in and through it. Job said, “I had only heard about you before, but now I have seen you with my own eyes.”
Beloved, got a moment for prayer? Let us pray.” Father in heaven, So far, I was fulfilling my desires and walking on my way. Please forgive me. I turn to you now. I understand you have a perfect plan for me. Lord, help me to obey you and walk in your ways. I surrender my life to you today. I believe Jesus Christ died, buried, and rose again for my sins. Please come to my heart and lead in your perfect ways. I pray this in the name of Jesus Christ, my savior. Amen.”