Choosing to suffer.

We recently lost a dear brother from Jackson, MI. I personally did not know him but was told of his reputable and strong stand on divine healing. I was informed that Bro. Warren had a disease or condition in his body that he suffered with for 30 years. At one point, his weight reduced to 67 pounds! It was shared of his relentless will to hold on to the promises of God that though nigh to death he walked right out of the hospital. I mused over these facts and wondered in awe of his ability to choose to suffer for the cause of Christ.

One may question, with all the pain and suffering he underwent, where was the deliverance?

The three Hebrew boys, Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego were true worshipers of God. When forced to bow down to the magnificent idol that King Nebuchadnezzar had made, they simply refused. When placed before the king for their violation, they said, “O Nebuchadnezzarwe are not careful to answer thee in this matter. If it be soour God whom we serve is able to deliver us from the burning fiery furnaceand he will deliver us out of thine handO king. But if notbe it known unto thee, O kingthat we will not serve thy godsnor worship the golden image which thou hast set up.

You may well know the story – the furnace was heated seven times more and the three Hebrew boys were bound and thrown into the fiery furnace. In reasoning one may wonder, why didn’t God deliver them from going into the flames? Surely, He had the power to change the king’s mind. He saw these men were faithful and loyal, why didn’t He defend their cause? My mind began to race with other Biblical heroes that suffered.

Noah and the great Flood.

Joseph – falsely accused and thrown into prison.

Job – lost all his children and possessions and was plagued with a cruel disease.

Daniel – intentionally thrown into the den of lions.

Jesus – accused and nailed to an old rugged cross.

So, where was the deliverance?

During the Flood, God kept Noah dry in the Ark and safe through the tempestuous storm and crashing waves. Granting him peace and harmony within when chaos raged without.

Joseph, in prison, was tried and proven faithful – God exalting him second in command to Pharoah in a land where he was a once a stranger, a slave, and prisoner and having his enemies be at his feet.

Job was completely restored and gained more in wealth and honor than what was lost, the favor of God resting upon him and his family.

Daniel, when in the den of lions, was kept from all harm – God having shut the lion’s mouth and giving him great peace and the heart of the king.

Jesus, though nailed to the cross, accomplished His Father’s will, having victory over death abolished sin so that we can be redeemed and have a great hope of eternal life with Him in Heaven!

Bro. Warren, though sick, was able to provide for his single-income family. God granting him not 15 years, as he did for Hezekiah but double and blessed him with 30 glorious years! When weak God restored him and gave him strength. When needy God supplied and withheld no good thing.

And the half has not been told!

All these men suffered – not for any wrong that they have done but for their stand and belief that God will deliver – and He did!

The three Hebrew boys knew their help came from God even if He chose to send them to the furnace – and it was in the furnace that they saw the Son of God!

In each of these circumstances, God was there. He did not remove the mountain. He didn’t take away the trial but He brought them through it and produced a great deliverance. Because of their stand, God made Himself strong and showed forth His great power and love in these men to be a testimony for you and me.

It’s difficult with the natural eye to process the mind and works of God. When situations arise our expectancy is an immediate deliverance. Delays cause us to question the hand of God.

The Lord did not remove Bro. Warren’s sickness but showed Himself wonderfully in his life.

God will deliver, but if not – by choosing not to remove those mountains… rest assured that He will always, always, ALWAYS be there.