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Blessing out of Pain

Foreword to The God Who Heals

Rick Warren

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Pastor Warren, author of The Purpose Driven Life, wrote this foreword to a new Plough book, The God Who Heals: Words of Hope for a Time of Sickness, by Johann Christoph Blumhardt and Christoph Friedrich Blumhardt.

At some point in life, every person will experience suffering, pain, and, eventually, death. It’s inevitable. When it happens, how are we going to respond?

Many of us, even Christians, struggle with God’s purpose when we are suddenly faced with a serious illness or terminal diagnosis. Our first response is to turn to God, asking him to spare us from the suffering. But what if his answer is not to heal us immediately but to perfect us through the suffering? Such a season can test our faith. But if we can surrender our will to his, through that pain God can deepen our faith, heal our soul, and restore our joy.

In their book, The God Who Heals, the Blumhardts remind us that physical healing is not God’s greatest answer to prayer. True healing is trusting God even when we lack understanding. It’s believing in the promises written in his Word, which renews our mind and lifts our spirit even as our body is failing. It’s not giving in to our fears. It’s about giving ourselves completely to Jesus. Whatever circumstance you are facing right now, this book of daily readings will help you focus on a closer relationship with Jesus, our one true spiritual healer.

When you go through deep valleys, God is there with you, walking alongside as you experience suffering. He knows it well. He’s been there. He understands. As one who knows great pain, Jesus is our Great Comforter. In his First Letter to the Corinthians, the apostle Paul tells us that just as God comforts us in our troubles, so too we can comfort others. How will you respond to the pain in your life? Our faith tells us that Jesus is the source of victory even in the midst of suffering. That’s because God doesn’t waste a hurt. He can use that pain to direct us in the way he wants us to go, to reveal what’s inside of us, to perfect us, and to make us more like himself. He is the Great Physician who specializes in bringing blessing out of pain.

Open up your life completely to him and get to know Jesus more intimately. Soak in these “words of hope for a time of sickness” by the Blumhardts and find healing strength for your soul. Hide God’s word in your heart, surrender your will, and trust in God’s promises. He will carry you through to eternity. You have his Word on it!

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Contributed By Rick Warren Rick Warren

Rick Warren is senior pastor of Saddleback Church and author of The Purpose Driven Life.He initiated the P.E.A.C.E. Plan with the goal of involving Christians from every church in serving people in the areas of the greatest need globally.

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