One of my New Years Resolutions is to perfect a calm state of being. To me, calmness comes from a complete and pure faith in God.
I want to cross a sea while threatened by towering walls of water on either side of me.
I want to be betrayed, thrown in a pit, enslaved, jailed, falsely accused, and imprisoned.
I want to stand firm in the furnace, flames engulfing me.
I want to stand in the den, staring into the face of a lion.
I want to see Christ at the right hand of God, standing for me, as stones are thrown.
I want to be crucified upside down with a smile on my face, dying in ecstasy, filled with the purest love for Him.
I want to be able to suffer.
It’s such a strange desire, one that does not make sense unless you understand what suffering can do.
It can free a nation.
It can save a nation.
It can make you stronger.
It can overcome fear.
It can overcome death.
It can redeem you.
Suffering many times springs from selfless sacrifice. Sacrifice many times springs from selfless love. God so loved man that He sacrificed His one and only son. Christ so loved us that he willingly sacrificed himself. That sacrifice ensured his suffering but ensured our salvation.
So yes, it might seem a strange resolution and a strange request, but if I could have one gift for Christmas, it would be to suffer for Him with joy.
Well that and a new couch.