Daily Devotional: Friday, July 9 - Waiting and Suffering

 “Not only that, but we rejoice in our sufferings, knowing that suffering produces endurance, and endurance produces character, and character produces hope.” — Romans 5:3-4 (ESV)

Along with millions of others, I paused and prayed for Danish midfielder Christian Erikson when he collapsed on the field in Denmark’s opening match of the Euro 2020 tournament.

The following day we found out that Erikson was “stabilized” and resting comfortably in the hospital, so along with other long-suffering Austrian fans, I jumped for joy when Austria defeated Northern Macedonia, 3-1. It was Austria’s first win in a major tournament in 31 years. I was actually in the stadium when Austria won that last time 31 years ago. It was a 1990 World Cup match vs. the U.S. Held in Italy, Austria prevailed 2-1. At that time, none of us could have imagined we would have to wait so long to see our next Austrian victory.

It reminds me the Bible is clear that we will experience times of waiting and times of suffering, but God will raise us up in His timing. The woman who was stooped over and couldn’t raise herself waited 18 years before Jesus healed her (Luke 13:10-13). Abraham and Sarah waited 25 years for a son (Genesis 12:4, 21:5). The invalid man at the pool of Bethesda had been waiting 38 years for a miracle (John 5:5-8).

What about you? Are you currently in a “waiting period” in your life? Waiting and hoping a marriage or relationship will be restored? For a future spouse? Answers for directions, guidance or purpose? A promotion? A healing?

Take comfort in the Bible and its wisdom to guide you in times of waiting and suffering.

— David Irby

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