Beauty In Suffering: Refocus Your Gaze

By Kathi Pelton

I have had a deep sense that God is asking His people to refocus their thoughts from the fixation of being “right” to being “the righteousness of God” on the earth.

“The righteous shall live by faith.”

I wonder if far too many of God’s people feel defeated as they have focused their gaze and their thoughts upon all of the wrongs happening in the world around us. For many, the fight for “what is right” (or the fight against what is wrong) can appear defeated. This narrow focus is robbing them of life and joy.

“But the righteous shall live by faith” Romans 1:17

We cannot fight flesh with flesh but rather we allow the Spirit of God to reveal His ways and by faith we walk in them and obey them as His righteous sons and daughters.

We will stand firm in the righteousness of God by faith. From that place of faith, we are justified. Our faith is fully attached to hope and hope in God will never disappoint. It is an eternal hope that brings peace, joy and love in the midst of a world that only eats the fruit of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil. We are sustained by the fruit of the Tree of Life that gives life and healing to people and to nations.

Is there suffering? Yes, without a doubt— throughout the world there is great suffering. Is there grief and mourning that many are going through? Is there trials and hardships? Yes. But we do not grieve to the point of despair nor are we hopeless because we know that “joy comes in the morning.”

So what do we do in seasons of grief, hardships and suffering? We let it do the work that only suffering can produce. There is beauty in brokenness and a sweet aroma that comes forth from those whose tears have found their hope and comfort in the grace and glory of God.

“Therefore, since we have been justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ. Through him we have also obtained access by faith into this grace in which we stand, and we rejoice in hope of the glory of God. More than that, we rejoice in our sufferings, knowing that suffering produces endurance, and endurance produces character, and character produces hope, and hope does not put us to shame, because God’s love has been poured into our hearts through the Holy Spirit who has been given to us.”

There is an invitation to “rejoice in suffering” as we allow it to produce endurance, character, hope and the love of God in us. The incense of this “joy” (not merely an emotion of feeling happy, but an unshakable eternal joy) and the tears of the saints as they pour out their praise in the midst of grief, will permeate the atmosphere with the righteousness of God.

Somehow I get the sense that the beautification of His bride as she surrenders to refinement and purification will effect the earth far more than anything else we have seen or done. His Church is being transformed and revived— as well as being prepared as a bride. As God’s sons and daughters stand in faith in the raging storm of loss and evil that has come upon the earth, it is justifying her. It is awakening her. It is clothing her with beauty and strength. I believe it is opening the way for the third great awakening.

It is okay to grieve, to weep and to mourn but shake off any hopeless despair. Shake off defeat, shame, regret and death. Let the suffering produce “Christ in you.”

Finally, shift your gaze! Do not dwell on the evil happening all around you. That does not mean to stop praying or stop doing whatever the Lord has asked you to do (just make sure that it is Him and not you). But let the instructions of Philippians 4:8-9 be your focus,

“Finally brothers, whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is just, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is commendable — if there is any moral excellence and if there is any praise — dwell on these things. Do what you have learned and received and heard and seen in me, and the God of peace will be with you.”

You do not have to deny your pain or pretend it doesn’t exist, but let your “amen” always be praise. There is great comfort found in the fullness of who He is. Be sure to let your thoughts be far more on “the beauty of Jesus” than the injustice and evil being promoted on the earth. The victory has already been established and obtained by our Savior. One day we will look around for our enemies and “they will be no more!”

“Do not fear, for I am with you; do not be afraid, for I am your God. I will strengthen you; I will help you; I will hold on to you with My righteous right hand. Be sure that all who are enraged against you will be ashamed and disgraced; those who contend with you will become as nothing and will perish. You will look for those who contend with you, but you will not find them. Those who war against you will become absolutely nothing. For I, Yahweh your God, hold your right hand and say to you: Do not fear, I will help you. Do not fear, you worm Jacob, you men of Israel: I will help you — this is the Lord’s declaration. Your Redeemer is the Holy One of Israel.” Isaiah‬ ‭41:10-14‬ ‭

‭He is our eternal hope and our daily comfort. Heaven is more real than anything happening on earth. God is with us and in Him we have great joy.

2023 Winter Fundraiser —————————————————

Inscribe Ministries is the ministry that my husband, Jeffrey and I formed many years ago. Our mission is to equip, provide strength, encouragement and to bring unity to the Church throughout the nations. In our many travels we partner with other ministries to link arms and strengthen them in what God has called them to do in their region. We are also called to steward what the Lord is speaking prophetically to His Church in the United States and globally.

We are fully funded by the faithful gifts of God’s people. As we prepare to begin our 2023 travels we have initiated our 2023 Winter Fundraisers that will provide for the costs of travel and lodging required to carry out all that God has called us to do. Your partnership makes you a part of the mission.

Will you stand with us by sending a gift of support to help cover these prepare for our first trip? To contribute go to:

To mail a contribution: Inscribe Ministries / 149 NE Ocean Loop / Hillsboro, Oregon 97124

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