How to Trust God’s Love When You are Suffering

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How do you trust God's love when you feel like He is the One who is allowing your pain and suffering? 5 ways to trust God's "no" when it's hard. #StrengthinSuffering #TrustGod'sLove #Faith #Hope #CountingMyBlessings #WWGGG

What do you do when you feel like God is the One who is allowing your pain and suffering?

You’ve prayed to get well, to be free of pain, for a healed relationship . . . for the desire of your heart.

The Bible says, “Take delight in the Lord, and He will give you your heart’s desires.” Psalm 37:4

You’ve done your best to do “good.” You’ve tried to obey His commands. Maybe you’ve even dedicated your life to serving Him in ministry. You’ve made every effort to “delight” in Him.

Yet for reasons beyond your ability to understand, no matter how much you pray in faith . . . God seems to be saying ‘no!’

And you can’t seem to shake the one thought that keeps repeating . . . it’s not fair!

To make things worse, like salt in a wound, everywhere you look, people who don’t even seem appreciative, have the very thing your heart longs for and you find yourself giving in to jealousy, tantrums, and self-pity.

So, you add whining and complaining to your prayers, like a child trying to get a parent to soften and give you what you want.

But nothing changes…

You wait and pray and wait and pray some more but you’re still sick. Still in pain. Still single. Still longing for a child, a job, a home, a _________.

This may be your story. It has been mine.

I had a heart’s desire years ago and I wanted what I wanted when I wanted it . . . God’s ‘no’ was simply unacceptable. I pouted, complained, whined, and refused to trust that God had a better plan for me.

Without giving you all the ugly details, I’ll tell you I learned a very big lesson the hard way.

Praise God for His forgiving grace, mercy, and love. He patiently showed me His better way. He taught me that I can trust His “no” even when it’s hard and I don’t want to. He taught 5 important truths . . . reasons I can trust His will even when it’s not my desire.

How to Trust God’s Love When You are Suffering

How do you trust God's love when you feel like He is the One who is allowing your pain and suffering? 5 ways to trust God's "no" when it's hard. #StrengthinSuffering #TrustGod'sLove #Faith #Hope #CountingMyBlessings #WWGGG

5 Reasons Why You and I can Trust God’s “No”

1. Trust God’s NO because EVERYthing God allows is filtered through His love.

Love is God’s character and He cannot do anything that is outside of who He is. He sees the big picture of our lives and always knows and does what is best for our eternal future even though we don’t understand and it doesn’t feel like it.

Joni Eareckson Tada once wrote…

“Real satisfaction comes not in understanding God’s motives, but in understanding His character, in trusting in His promises, and in leaning on Him and resting in Him as the Sovereign who knows what He is doing and does all things well.”

Let me hear of your unfailing love each morning, for I am trusting you. Show me where to walk, for I give myself to you.

Psalm 143:8

2. Trust God’s NO because His goodness covers EVERYthing He allows.

God is good! Everything He does is good! You and I live in a sinful broken world and often have to live out the consequences of that truth. But although this life can be hard, God is always at work for our good in ways that will give Him glory.

All He does is just and good, and all His commandments are trustworthy. 

Psalm 111:17

And we know that God causes everything to work together for the good of those who love God and are called according to His purpose for them. 

Romans 8:28

3. Trust God’s NO because He sees the beginning from the end and may be saying “no” to protect you. 

You and I make God too small. He is everlasting. He knows your past and your future. He knows the lives you will touch and knows how best to bless you always keeping your eternal future in mind.

But you must not forget this one thing, dear friends: A day is like a thousand years to the Lord, and a thousand years is like a day.

2 Peter 3:8

4. Trust God’s NO while you do what you can and leave the rest to Him.

It’s important for you and me to get up each day and focus on what we can do. It helps me to focus on counting my blessings and remembering what I have rather than dwelling on what’s lacking. My goal is to do my best with the Spirit’s help to trust God’s plans and purposes one day at a time remembering they always include love . . . very big love. And because of His love, He will give me what I need to endure whatever He allows.

“Harness the power of today. Seize the blessings of today! Make something happen, enhance your life, make someone laugh, help a friend, love, love, love!”  ~Steve Maraboli

The faithful love of the Lord never ends!
    His mercies never cease.
Great is His faithfulness;
    His mercies begin afresh each morning.

Lamentations 3:22–23

5. Trust God’s NO as you lean deep into His love through prayer and study of His Word.

When life is hardest . . . I need God the most. So, I turn to Him through His Word and prayer, and by His grace, I begin to rest in His love. With the Spirit’s help, my experience has been that when I lean into the Lord in faith, He is faithful to give me what I need to live that day.

The Lord also keeps safe those who suffer. He is a safe place in times of trouble. Those who know Your name will put their trust in You. For You, O Lord, have never left alone those who look for You. 

Psal, 9:9–10 (NLV)

“I won’t tell you it will be easy. It won’t.”

Walking through a valley of grief and heartache is an arduous journey but it is not one we have to take alone.

Even when I walk through the darkest valley, I will not be afraid, for You are close beside me. Psalm 23:4

Satan will consistently use your pain, your broken heart to tempt you to doubt God’s love, give up, and to try to take care of things on your own.

Martin Luther said that his tactics have never changed … the lie is still the same as it was in the Garden…

“The sin underneath all our sins is to trust the lie of the serpent that we cannot trust the love and grace of Christ and must take matters into our own hands” ~Martin Luther

I have learned the hard way – that God’s ways are best. I’ve lived out the consequences of falling for the enemy’s lies, and I’ve come to believe with all my heart that God’s grace saturates everything He allows and His protecting hand of mercy surrounds anything He denies.

This isn’t fatalism. It’s faith!

Whatever you are facing today, remember…

God will walk with you through this valley. You can trust His goodness and love … He has proven just how much through His Son, Jesus. You are not alone!

He promised…

Three different times I begged the Lord to take it away. Each time he said, “My grace is all you need. My power works best in weakness.” So now I am glad to boast about my weaknesses so that the power of Christ can work through me. 

2 Corinthians 12:8–9

I love this quote from Babbie Mason in Trust His Heart…

God is too wise to be mistaken.
God is too good to be unkind.
So when you don’t understand.
When you don’t see His plan.
When you can’t trace His hand.
Trust His Heart!

My friend, Horace Williams, has written an awesome new book,
The Furnace of Affliction

In The Furnace of Affliction: How God Uses Our Pain and Suffering for His Purpose, Horace Williams Jr. tackles this challenging topic. Based on the Word of God, insights from other leaders, and his studies, he addresses several key points, including: 

  • How pain develops our faith
  • How pain determines our path
  • How pain delivers comfort, joy, and peace
  • And how pain deepens our commitment to God. 

Packed with personal stories and scripture to support his points, Horace shares his insights on the problem of pain. His candid and straightforward communication style engages the reader as he addresses this critical topic for the body of Christ today. 

I really loved this book. I’ve known Horace for a number of years but there was so much of his story I didn’t know. God has allowed pain and problems in his life and Horace is turning it into an opportunity to give God glory. This book is both powerful and inspiring. It even offers study questions at the end of each chapter to help you personalize your own journey.

Finally, leave a comment and tell us how you are learning to trust God’s love even when you’re suffering.

Thank you so much for joining me today.
And a thank you to BibleGateway.com for sources.

I’m so excited to tell you about my new book!

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33 thoughts on “How to Trust God’s Love When You are Suffering

  1. Thank you so much for this much needed message. I have found myself wanting to take things into my own hands to “hurry up” what I have been praying about. I know God is in control and he is working, even when I can’t see it. I want God to change my child’s heart and to show her the truth. I know his timing is perfect and his will is perfect, but I struggle in the waiting. I’m so thankful for his grace and mercy and for growing my faith through the pain.

    1. Oh, Brenda, I’ve been there and will probably be there again. It’s so hard to wait on God’s timing. By His grace, I have learned that whatever He allows or when He asks us to wait . . . He filters it all through His grace, mercy, and love. I also know now, that He will give us the strength we need to walk any path He allows. Praise God for His all-sufficient grace. Thanks for visiting and for joining the conversation. Blessings!

    2. Dear Brenda, never lose hope. God hears the cries of your heart and is faithful!
      He loves your child too!
      I saw my precious son come back to the Lord at forty years old after walking away from Him as a teenager.
      Those years were painful and hard for me to endure but I knew that my son was God’s child first and as much as I loved my son God loved him even more.
      I know our Lord was with my son all those years, talking to his heart, letting him learn things, preparing him for the life He ultimately wanted for my son.
      I still don’t know why he let my child go through all he did before he turned his life over to God but I do know that God’s plan and timing were perfect.
      I stand by you in prayer for your dear child Brenda.
      God bless you!

      1. Thank you so much! I appreciate your encouragement and your prayers for my daughter. I’m thankful for this Christian community.

  2. I must continue to choose to love God no matter what he has allowed in our lives. I previously went through the nightmare of breast cancer and it has now mestatized into my bones which is very painful! I don’t know “why? but I do know that God allowed it for His purposes!

    1. I am so sorry, Frances. I am praying for you and asking God to hold you close and give you the strength you need each day. May He surround you with His love and grant you His peace. God bless you!

  3. I have been in a season of waiting for about 5 years. I have learned to lean into GOD’S word and to ask for patience and the ability to expectantly wait. My faith has grown, my heart remains open and my mind clear as focus on GOD and HIS good plan “to prosper and not harm me.” Thanks for your encouraging and inspiring words.

    1. Waiting is so hard. I have several ongoing prayers, some of which I’ve been praying for many years. You’re right, God has used this time of waiting to teach me so much about who He is and all they ways I can trust Him to filter what He allows through truth and love. May He be with you and bless you!

  4. All of your points are so good, Deb! But the one that I’m working on the most is trying to see what I have that’s good in my life rather than focusing on where I lack. That’s truly a discipline that I’m very weak in! Lol! Thank you for your wisdom taken directly from God’s word so we surely can trust it! Pinning and tweeting, my friend!

    1. Thank you so much, Beth! I need that reminder too! It’s so easy to complain about the few things that are not going the way I want and forget to praise Him for the countless things that are. So, thankful God doesn’t give up on us and continues to show us His grace, mercy, and love. Blessings, my friend!

  5. Deb – I find your message thoughtful and heartfelt. What you seem to try to avoid is that GOD IS IN FACT ALLOWING YOUR SUFFERING. We as Christians want to know WHY. We actually think that if we just knew WHY then we would be able to understand and even accept it. The truth is that in thinking that way what we really want is to BE GOD. Sound familiar? (Adam and Eve). The hardest part of being Christian is to ACCEPT that are still just human beings. Vaya con Dios…….

    1. Thank you for visiting, Philip. I agree, God does allow suffering. As I mentioned in several of the points – it’s trusting His goodness and love even when He allows pain and suffering. Yes, we want to know why and yes, we want to be in control. Praise God for His wisdom and loving patience. God be with you!

  6. Thank you Deb for your inspiring post. I have been receiving and reading your post for a while now and this is my first time posting.

    Thank you, your have really inspired me along my Journey.

    God bless you.

  7. God’s timing is always right. We just need to wait on the Lord and be of good courage. His ways are not our ways but we just need the faith and patience to know that He is working on our behalf. I am a work in progress as I learn to cast my cares on Him knowing that He cares for me. Thank you Deb for being such an encouragement to me and countless others. God bless you.

    1. I am definitely a work in progress, too, Martha! I can feel so strong one day and then fall flat on my face the next. What a blessing to be covered by His grace and mercy. I pray every day to surrender completely to His will and follow where He leads . . . that He will give the courage and strength I need. We are blessed! Thanks so much for your kind encouragement. God be with you!

  8. Resting in the profound truth that God is always good helps me stand firm in hard times. I love all the reasons you explained and have always loved Babbie’s wonderful quote.

  9. Thank you, Deb for taking the time to read my book and share your thoughts. Pain is a powerful motivator in achieving God’s purpose. I had no idea how God intended to use the painful moments in my life for His glory. It’s my prayer for those who read that they are inspired to draw nearer to Jesus and have hope knowing He has a unique purpose for their life. Be well, sister and God bless you and your family.

  10. Hi Deb,
    Once again you set out beautifully the concept of pain and suffering…..instead of running from our cross, if we put our trust in God, who knows the bigger picture, we are never left to walk alone. That is His promise to us, those who seek Him are never alone. He goes before us always…..He is our safe place, our refuge in times of suffering. He knows what suffering is, He bore it for us. He is our comforter. You put it so well…”because of His love, He will give me what I need, to endure whatever He allows”. It builds trust and increases our faith. Your words as always are inspiring and thought proving. I will hold them dear to my heart and let them resonate there, as I walk the path of suffering, embracing my cross.
    Thank you and blessings always.
    Angela – Dublin – Ireland

    1. Angela, you are such a wonderful encourager. Thank you! It is hard for us to understand the bigger picture, isn’t it? But we don’t always get to see how God is using events and circumstances not only in our lives but in the lives of those around us. We can trust His grace, mercy, and love to meet our needs in all situations. Thanks so much for visiting and for adding to the conversation. Blessings to you!

  11. Thank you so much for this reminder and your words of wisdom, Deb! I especially love how you pointed out that “EVERYthing God allows is filtered through His love”. This brings such peace and comfort when the trials arise. Thank you for sharing!

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