- 'Why me?'
- 'Why now?'
- 'Why this trial?'
- 'When will this end?'
In the second chapter of The Bruised Reed Richard Sibbes discusses the benefits Christ procures in us by allowing us to experience affliction. While this obviously doesn't reveal the whole array of reasons God might let his children suffer, it does account for some of them. Be encouraged:
Amen. Dr. Sibbes almost makes you wish you could experience more bruising, just to gain all the blessing from it! Almost ...
A marvelous hard thing it is, to bring a dull and shifting heart to cry with feeling for mercy. Our hearts (like malefactors) until they be beaten from all shifts, never cry for the mercy of the Judge. Again, this bruising makes us set a high price upon Christ; the Gospel is the Gospel indeed then, when the fig-leaves of morality will do us no good: and it makes us more thankful, and from thankfulness more fruitful in our lives. For what makes many so cold and barren, but that bruising for sin never endeared God's grace unto them? Likewise this dealing of God does establish us the more in his ways, having had knocks and bruisings in our own ways.