Today’s Encouragement is 1 Peter 3:17 ESV “For it is better to suffer for doing good, if that should be God’s will, than for doing evil.”
If that should be God’s will –
This phrase implies that God may desire for us to suffer for doing good, (ranging from experiencing some minor discomfort to even significant pain!) OR He may NOT desire us to suffer for doing good.
My friends, if (since) we believe that He has good plans for us (Jeremiah 29:11 “For I know the plans I have for you, declares the LORD, plans for welfare and not for evil, to give you a future and a hope.”), then we must also believe that He has a purpose and plan for the experiences we have in this life.
Now we certainly experience things in this life, minor or major, which are not directed by God’s hand. Some suffering which we experience is far beyond what our Loving Father would choose for our teaching and molding…this is a fallen world we inhabit; people do things outside His will and sometimes we suffer because of their actions, natural disasters etc. And there is evil in this world which cannot be denied!
However, because God is sovereign, He can (and will) use our experiences in this life, to form our character, according to His plan for us.
And my friends, God is more interested in our character than our comfort.
So, God sometimes, not always, will allow us to suffer (for a time) even for doing good… and such suffering is far better than suffering (or even not suffering) for doing evil.
Father help us to understand and accept by faith this challenging truth.