What makes pain worth it?
A fuller picture of suffering comes when we look to the life and death of Jesus Christ. Our finite human brains can’t even fully grasp what it means for God to become man, the Son of God, who was in perfect fellowship with His Father, leaving that joyful and perfect relationship to be rejected, misunderstood, betrayed, hated, and mistreated...all completely unjustly and undeserved. Jesus experienced physical pain and relational pain to a greater degree than any of us could imagine:
He was despised and rejected by men;
a man of sorrows, and acquainted with grief;
and as one from whom men hide their faces
he was despised, and we esteemed him not.
Surely he has borne our griefs
and carried our sorrows;
yet we esteemed him stricken,
smitten by God, and afflicted.
The ultimate suffering brought us redemption, forgiveness, and the ability to experience suffering in a God-glorifying, Gospel-spreading way. Suffering is worth it because it sanctifies us - restores our hearts to their proper use - removing the idols from our hearts and revealing more of Jesus...until He finally and forever wipes every tear from our eyes and pain is no more.
We may never understand why trials enter our lives, but God, our glorious tapestry weaver, sees the finished product, a majestic and perfectly planned tapestry of grace in which we are but a thread.
Will we take His hand and believe, beyond our finite outlook on life, that God is, always, finally and forever, working all things for the good of those who love Him?