There are 7 thoughts on “Christ and the Work of Suffering”.

  1. This article is beautiful and calming. Thank you for taking the time to write it, and thank you editors for publishing it. I was reminded of the Lord teaching Adam “all things bear record of me” (Moses 6:63). We usually read that and think about sunsets, flowers in the meadow, the laughter of children. But he didn’t say “all nice things bear record of me.” “All things” includes winter storms, starvation, Covid, and painful death in childbirth. It’s sobering to think how these terrors might also bear record of God. Suffering is no accident. God is not standing helplessly by, wringing his hands just wishing he could intervene and help us. Suffering is part of why we’re here, suffering is intentional and purposeful. Praise God that thru his Son we are given power to endure and eventually overcome, even if the overcoming is in death.

  2. Dear Melissa, Wow! Thanks for your thoughtful insights. Your writings have enriched my life since we met at the Wesley Theological Seminary symposium in Washington back in 2012-13 or so. Having had a number of sweet, close friends & family suffer through their various cancers, I’ve learned a bit about the pathos you’re going through. While some, like my wife, Kaye, were fully healed, many eventually died after enduring so much tribulation. So keep the faith. May you & your family be strengthened & comforted. Keep on writing & sharing your deep spiritual insights for the world. Love you, friend.

  3. This is a very timely article in this era of Covid-19. We ask “why” and receive no answer, but the answer is already there waiting for us to discover, just as Sister Inouye has so aptly shown us.

  4. Dear Sister Inouye,

    This piece was unspeakably moving. Like most great writing, part of its message remains ineffable, spoken in the language of the spirit that transcends characters. This is particularly true when the writing draws on the deep things of the soul, as yours has done.

    There’s someone rather close to me who has recently experienced a battle with cancer. I think I’ll send it your piece over to her. You may have helped God answer a prayer.

    Your brother in Christ,
    Hoosier

  5. “I prayed about it and received an answer,” said my Mission President. “You were sent out here to fail.” All of the horrific memories from my mission passed before my eyes. He continued “If you had a mission like anyone else’s you would not have been challenged and you would never have grown. The faith that is hard for others, is easy for you. But you also needed to grow so your challenges were much harder than the what the others experienced.” It was no comfort, but it was insight. I did indeed grow and my experiences changed me, but I never openly speak of my mission; it is too difficult for those who didn’t have a similar experience. It is too hard for most people to imagine a God who builds failure into the plan of our lives.

  6. Dear Melissa:

    Your essay brought me to tears. I very much appreciate the story you have told about yourself and how it has drawn you to our Lord.

    When you mentioned that beach and that wild surf west of Auckland, I was reminded of having visited that very place twenty years ago when wife and I were there loving every minute of our missionary endeavors in Auckland.

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