As Christians, many of us have the idea that everything in our lives should be perfect simply because we are Christians. But Jesus clearly warned us, “In the world you have tribulation and trials and distress and frustration!” (John 16:33 AMP).
Jesus said we would have to deal with worldly troubles. These things are a part of life that we must all face when we lay down our selfish desires to follow Him.
The apostle Paul wrote, “But [like a boxer] I buffet my body [handle it roughly, discipline it by hardships] and subdue it!”(1 Corinthians 9:27).
Paul is speaking here about self-discipline. Being self-disciplined means laying down our sinful desires and doing the right thing by God’s grace, no matter what the cost.
It’s not always easy. Dying to self will bring necessary suffering, but remember, even in the face of our suffering, there is hope, for Christ has overcome the world! And like Paul said, we can “rejoice and exult in hope; be steadfast and patient in suffering and tribulation; be constant in prayer.”
Prayer Starter: God, I decide in advance to please You, whether my flesh is willing or not. Even if I need to suffer to do Your will, I know that there is hope, for Your Spirit is in me, and You have overcome the world.
—from Joyce Meyer daily devotional