Romans 5: 1Therefore, since we have been justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ. 2Through him we have also obtained access by faith into this grace in which we stand, and we rejoice in hope of the glory of God. 3More than that, we rejoice in our sufferings, knowing that suffering produces endurance, 4and endurance produces character, and character produces hope, 5and hope does not put us to shame, because God’s love has been poured into our hearts through the Holy Spirit who has been given to us. (ESV)
In reading the above passage, this came to me . I've always thought the suffering mentioned was persecution for my faith. But in looking at it I'm beginning to think it is all the stresses of life: financial, emotional, physical. Those things that are a part of living and test our faith. But God's word is Rejoice. Look up to God and rejoice. He is with us and in us, in all of our circumstances. God doesn't take away our hard times but we are not alone in them. It is allowed and a part of His work. His love is poured (love that action word) into our hearts by the Holy Spirit. We are inhabited by God and filled up with love. We are in a safe place, even in pain, suffering and hardship. And it is God's creative work in us. It really hit me personally, my need to rejoice in him, to remember His work and refuse to entertain Satan's ideas that I am abandoned, unloved and a failure.