Found a good article on suffering on the website for the Orthodox Presbyterian Church. This is particularly insightful given my afternoon at the hospital. While we enjoyed a glorious day of sun and temperatures approaching 70 F the inside of the hospital was like a parallel universe with each room a world of its own suffering.
Here are a couple of snippets...
"There is a theme in the Bible so pervasive that it virtually defines the Christian life. That theme is suffering. Christians are not exempt from suffering...There is a theme in the Bible so pervasive that it virtually defines the Christian life. That theme is suffering. Christians are not exempt from suffering."
"Michael Horton writes in The Law of Perfect Freedom: "We are in desperate need ... of a theology of suffering.... There is a deeper, richer theology in the old Negro spirituals than in most of the contemporary 'happy-clappy' jingles of congregations often characterized 'yuppy.' In those Negro spirituals, God-centeredness, the longing for heaven, the emphasis on the great events and truths of redemptive history wed personal struggle with hope in the Lord alone."
"Richard B. Gaffin writes of the givenness of suffering: "Until [Christ's] return, the church remains one step behind its exalted Lord; his exaltation meant its (privileged) humiliation, his return (and not before), its exaltation."
Click here to read it in its entirety.