Thoughts On Suffering

A Blog on Suffering by Bro. Mark
My disability has begun to get the upper hand now and confines me to my bed most of the time, with a single walk around the house with my crutches. I try this walk around the house just to keep my muscles from atrophying, even though each step produces excruciating pain I feel like I’m going to war with pain and I refuse to lose this war. My life as a contemplative hermit gives me hope that my suffering is doing someone else some good. I personally believe that the energies that bloom from my physical pain is transformed by God into energies of healing. I don’t know right now who or what benefits from these energies. Hopefully, if I make it to Heaven I will get to know, but right now it remains a mystery. It is my love for Christ Jesus and all that He endured on the Cross that keeps me moving forward into the unknown. He humbly submitted to the suffering imposed by the soldiers. The humiliation, the beatings, the crown of thorns, the nails, the Cross. I don’t understand why He chose suffering to heal my soul, but I believe He chose this way to bring each and every human being into union with His Father. He died for all people, and He promises to draw all people to Himself. I believe Christ Jesus uses suffering to bring healing to our world because suffering is so hated by man. We all despise suffering. We all try every which way to avoid it. So why in the heck did Christ embrace suffering since it is so hated. I believe He embraced suffering because He knows the intrinsic value it truly has. He knows the energies it produces can be transformed into healing energies. Now, I must importantly note that the suffering I am writing about is not a sadistic or masochistic suffering, but the suffering that just comes to us as we live our daily lives. Those who embrace these daily sufferings for the sake of Christ also grow in patience, grow in mercy, in forgiveness through the grace that God freely gives us. I understand how some may think my way of thinking is out of whack. It might be, but this journey God has me on makes me believe suffering has value in life and for life. Often in prayer, I concentrate on the wounds of Christ and I rest in His wounds. I ask to be united with Him as my one true Love. That I too may be a co-redeemer along with St. Paul and the rest of His Saints, a co-redeemer who has been invited by Him to be a disciple, a brother and a lover. Through my daily suffering, I have become closer to Christ Jesus. I believe I have anyway. I experience a deeper peace in my heart and life, now that I have offered my sufferings to Christ Jesus. I have a deeper respect for all of Gods creation and a new hope that my sufferings can and does help heal our broken world. The energies produced from suffering are very powerful. I can’t over estimate this enough. If you have trouble with your suffering and its meaning for you in your life, I invite you to ask the Holy Spirit to help you understand what it all means for you. Be open to the possibility that your suffering can help others. I promise you, when you freely offer it to Christ Jesus you will begin to experience a fullness of grace flowing into your heart and your life. If you are losing hope because of the weight of your suffering, please be patient with yourself, unite yourself to the Heart of Christ Jesus no matter how far away from Him you might feel. I remember reading the life of St. Francis of Assisi many years ago and how he called suffering his sister. He use to speak to his suffering asking it to be gentle with him. And in his heart, he found peace. He found hope, he found a faith that completely transformed his life. He embraced suffering as his sister. Personally, I am still trying to embrace my suffering like St. Francis embraced his, but I am still very far away from that transformation. I’m open to such a transformation if it be Gods will. In the meantime I will continue to trust that my suffering is transformative and that it’s doing the world some good. It is my prayer that you who may read this blog and are struggling with the meaning of your own daily suffering, will find meaning in it. I pray that your sufferings and my own will unite, that our suffering along with everyone else’s suffering will become a wonderful gift of transformative love and healing for the world that so desperately needs it at this time in history. Until the next time, may God fill your whole being with His grace and patience as each new day brings you new promise.
Your brother in Christ Jesus,
Hermits of St. Giles