Economic prosperity seems to be the driving force of our western culture. We judge the success of our nation in terms of hospital waiting lists, inflationary figures, employment statistics, and a growing economy. The prosperity of the culture we live in is measured in terms of wealth and health.
For Christians however, true prosperity comes through suffering. "Has not God made foolish the wisdom of this world?" For through suffering God shapes our character to become more like Christ. It doesn’t matter whether you are rich or poor, what is important to God is that you become like Jesus.
God used suffering to make Jesus perfect. He was tested and tried in every circumstance of life and did not sin. He was found to be faithful in all things.
For it was fitting that he, for whom and by whom all things exist, in bringing many sons to glory, should make the founder of their salvation perfect through suffering. Hebrews 2:10
As we live in a fallen world as Christians, we will suffer. You don’t have to look for it, it just happens. Now if God made Jesus perfect through suffering, He will certainly use the hardships of life to refine our imperfect characters.
For Christians true wealth is not found in material possessions. It is found in Christ. He is the heir of all things. True health is not found in our physical well being. It is our spiritual well being that is important to God.
So if you are suffering at the moment, be of good cheer. God is at work making you become more like Jesus.
(For more information checkout our Prosperity Gospel section - Ed.)