Romans 5 has to be one of the best chapters in the Bible. Can the message of God’s love for us be conveyed in a better way than verses 6-8? To me this chapter has a central theme. Hope. And of course, hope does not disappoint us!

Of all the amazing verses in this chapter, I must draw your attention to the verse that jumped out at me this morning. In verse three a phrase appears, two words sit side-by-side bringing hope. It is simply this: SUFFERING PRODUCES…

This weekend, the student ministry will be on a ski trip to beautiful White Mountains of Arizona. Our theme for the weekend is: Erosion. Erosion is the process of decay caused by natural agents. As we sit up in the mountains we are reminded that in nature, erosion creates. Often, erosion creates something beautiful. It may look like the ground is wasting away, but in fact God is creating a magnificent Grand Canyon. EROSION CREATES…. SUFFERING PRODUCES…

Maybe today is going to be a difficult day for you. Maybe things are breaking down in your life, or maybe you feel like you are wasting away. It could be finances, relationships, or your job. It could be things outside of your control. And maybe God is creating something beautiful in your soul that you cannot understand this moment.

The NT authors understood this well. Check out James 1:2, II Cor. 4:8-12, 16-18, I Peter 4:12-13, Phil. 3:7-11. Peter, James, Paul all agree. Outwardly we might be wasting away, yet inwardly we are being renewed. And we may be dying, but resurrection awaits us on the other side.

May you have hope today and know that God is not far from your suffering…


  1. As a female, I understand that a token that I treasure from my husband (my diamond ring) was only made through putting pressure on a piece of coal. God allows something amazing to happen in nature by putting pressure on an everyday object to make it extraordinary. Now when I think about it in that manner I then understand that in order for me to become extraordinary in God's service, as a mother, as a wife, on my job, God is going to allow "pressure", "suffering", "erosion" to happen in my life. I have bookmarked and put in large bold letters on my desktop II Cor. 4:8-10. We are hard pressed on every side, but not crushed; perplexed, but not in despair; persecuted, but not abandoned; struck down, but not destroyed. This is a message that allows up to understand that even in the worst situations there is HOPE. GOD knows, he is making us better through our suffering, and we will emerge as DIAMONDS on the other side as this pressure forms us into something EXTRAORDINARY in GOD's service.

    Theresa Joseph

  2. If I understand suffering has a purpose it gives me great strength and hope.

    Anyone wonder why 4:20 says, "Abraham never wavered in believing God's promise." when he is the one that did the whole Ishmael fiasco? I did. I asked someone about it and their thought was that in v 19 it references that it was when he was 100... after that episode. Hmm.