Philippians 1:29 (nasb) "...For to you it has been granted for Christ's sake, not only to believe in Him, but also to suffer for His sake..."
I have been meditating on this verse for the last three days. I am encouraged to see that through the sovereignty of my God He has allowed me to believe in Him. At the same time I am also excited to see that through His sovereignty He allows me to suffer...on His behalf, or for His sake.
Doesn't this change the whole face of suffering for the Christian? It seems to me that since God is sovereignly in control of everything (salvation and suffering) that even when my life my seem out of control... it isn't. That means that God is only allowing me to experience what I can handle (totally dependent on Him, of course) and not a bit more. Another observation is that I am 'joining with Christ' as I suffer for doing what is right.
As I continue to face what I term "suffering", I face it now expectantly and joyfully.