I’m coming to the end of The Rare Jewel of Christian Contentment and yesterday found another unique perspective on contentment in the midst of suffering. This was an angle upon which I hadn’t yet reflected.
12:5-The creatures suffer for us; why should not we be willing to suffer, to be serviceable to God? God subjects other creatures, they are fain to lose their lives for us, to lose whatever beauty and excellence they have, to be serviceable to us; why should we not we be willing to part with anything in service for God? Certainly, there is not as great a distance between other creatures and mankind as there is between mankind and God.
He then goes on to use an illustration from a previously existing source (he was in ‘fellowship’ with those believers who had gone before him; always a good habit) to further display this point. If we can begin to consider our lives as offerings to God (Rom 12;1; II Tim 4:6), and that in our trials we are being serviceable to God and His work in us/the world, then we may yet find contentment even in dire circumstances. In other words, if animals become useful to us by suffering, then so can we become useful to God and His Kingdom when things are taken away. I think this is a good take, whether you’re an animal lover or not.
FYI. Please be reminded that no fish were harmed for the purpose of this post; this redfish was released unharmed. Some other redfish gave his life for this deliciously fried beer battered dinner.