God doesn’t magically dispel suffering, at least not most times: He enters into the thick of it and uses it to accomplish something in us, and often through us, that no amount of pleasure or success could ever produce.
Peter (in 1 Peter) enumerates some of the values God conjures from our suffering:
- It refines our faith (1 Peter 1:6-7).
- It perfects our hope (1 Peter 1:8-9, 21).
- It weans us from sin (1 Peter 4:1-3).
- It deepens our intimacy with Jesus (1 Peter 4:12-13).
- It trains us in holiness (1 Peter 4:16-19).
This may be a good news-bad news message for you. The good news is that God has holy purposes in your suffering, no matter the shape and cause and depth and duration of that suffering. The bad news is, as much as you want God to save you out of the suffering, he might have other ideas. God is more intent in helping you to work out your salvation in and through the suffering than he is whisking you out of it.
He is out to perfect you.