The topic of suffering is frequently left out of the Gospel message, so at time new believers are surprised to learn that it is part of the Christian experience. Jesus Himself said, “in the world you will have tribulation; but be of good cheer, I have overcome the world”(John 16:33). And Paul wrote, “We must through many tribulations enter the kingdom of God” (Acts 14:22)
There are two kinds of sufferings Christians encounter as they follow Christ. First, the challenge of living in a fallen world-this hardship is experienced by everyone, Christian’s or not. Second, there is the hardship we encounter for being followers of Christ, which is more rightly called persecution. While all persecutions is hardship, all hardships are not the result of persecution for our faith. Whatever the cause of the trials we encounter, the Bible says they have godly purpose: ultimately conform us to the image of Christ (Romans 8:28-29). Trials produce perseverance, character, and hope-with hope being the anchor of our souls (Hebrews 6:19)
When you encounter hardship, embrace it as a tool that will help you become more like Jesus and keep your hope in God.