Why Nothing is the Same After You’ve Experienced Suffering

I have refined you, but not as silver is refined.
Rather, I have refined you in the furnace of suffering. – Isaiah 48:10

How many times in the past seven years have I just wanted a reset button? I wanted to go back to an easier time. A healthier time. A happier time.

Suffering does that, doesn’t it? Chronic illness or disability. Divorce or betrayal. Addiction or ruin. Whether the issue is long-term or strikes like a snake, we are affected in ways that change us.

After something craters your life that drastically, there really is no possible way to go back. Suffering changes us. Tragedy shapes us. Grief contorts us.

crossroads photo

So I find myself at a crossroads. Try my hardest to recapture my old self, or step bravely into the future that God has prepared for this new me.

And this is the beautiful truth that I am learning:

After something like this, things shouldn’t be the same.

bud photo

In the arms of Jesus, change becomes transformation. Loss becomes redemption. Betrayal becomes grace.

In the throne room of our Great God, despair melts into mercy. Raging melts into peace. Questioning melts into compassion.

A life lived in the Spirit changes grief into supernatural comfort. Changes cries and moans into beautiful prayer. Changes a heart of stone into one that beats only for Him.

If we are not made new after going through the refining fire of suffering of any kind, then we have missed the point, haven’t we?

crossroads photo

I choose to take that step… you know, the brave one? I choose to embrace the new person I have become. I choose to move forward, to face forward, instead of looking back.

Are you at a crossroads? How can we pray for you?

Dear Lord, thank You for refining me. Thank You for giving me a choice, even now. I will follow You forever, into this new life You have prepared for me. In Jesus’ Name, Amen…

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May God Bless You,


12 Comments on “Why Nothing is the Same After You’ve Experienced Suffering

  1. My crossroads is not being through the original physical challenge that brings suffering (or in a place where healing is a human potential) but now adding on a level of chronic pain that is intersecting with the other.

    The “new” is being diagnosed still after 6 months and failed spinal epidural injections (failed in that they brought no relief and in the case of the last one brought more pain).

    I’ll meet with a new specialist who seems God’s perfect fit for me.
    And in the meantime, accepting what cannot be changed and forging ahead with the publication of my book. Of course all this “new” came right in the midst of heavy involvement with that – just a ripe time for the enemy to bring me down. Well – I am heading UP – at least away from his taunts. Amen.
    Lynn+Severance recently posted…Book Update: Countdown to Printing – Nearing Publication!!!My Profile

    • Oh my sweet friend, I had no idea you were facing that kind of crossroads! I am adding all of this to my war room wall for you! You continue to inspire me. I love you. <3 Heart Hugs

  2. Oh Shelly how I loved your words today
    They are words filled with such deep wisdom.
    Praying morning and night as this transformative journey continues.
    You are loved by many and your ministry base will be ever expanding as you share the tresusures of the darkness Christ is revealing to YOU.

    • Thank you, Mary! <3 You have been such a Barnabas to me. I love you. Heart Hugs

  3. Absolutely beautifully written, Shelly! God’s transformation and healing not only gave you a new outlook on life, but it’s evident also as to how you worship Him, and how you live through each and every step. He has also changed your writing with more depth, more eloquence, articulation and even more beauty. I love seeing the beauty He made through your ashes. Simply amazing!

    Big hug and continued blessings!
    Tammy+Ingram recently posted…Back The Blue Whatever You Do! You Have No Idea What We Go Through!My Profile

  4. Wow! Thank you, Tammy, for your sweet encouragement! You have a real gift for that and I thank God for crossing our paths! I love you! <3 Heart Hugs

    • Thank you so much, sweet sister! I am praying for you as well, constantly! I love you! <3 Heart Hugs

  5. You are amazing! This was written with such depth of beauty I found myself going back and reading each word more slowly and with my heart in attitude of worship. Our God is so awesome as He carefully works His will into our lives.

    • You are SO right, Sandy and that’s a great way to put it… He does carefully work His will into our lives. Thank you, as always, for being such a balm and a boon in my life. I love you, Big Sis! <3 Heart Hugs

  6. Suffering enables us to be more compassionate with others…if we allow our hearts to stay soft. Our family loves that Lincoln Brewster song. We sing it often for family worship.
    Thanks for linking up with Grace and Truth.

    • Yes! As the Bible says, He comforts us so that we may comfort others with that same comfort that He bestows. Heart Hugs, Shelly <3

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