Therefore, since Christ suffered in his body, arm yourselves also with the same attitude, because he who has suffered in his body is done with sin. As a result, he does not live the rest of his earthly life for evil human desires, but rather for the will of God. 1 Peter 4:1-2
As noted yesterday, the phrase "done with sin" does not mean that the believer will live without sin. The phrase means that identifying with Christ in suffering is a clear sign that we have made a break with the sinful life. As a visible result, we do not live to follow our "human desires, but rather for the will of God."
Suffering has a way of refining the soul. It strips away all the things we think are important and forces us to hold on to all the things that truly are. Tough times allow us to hear the voice of God more clearly and, thus, follow Him more closely. C. S. Lewis well says that pain is God's megaphone to a deaf world.
Pain is never invited. Valleys are not something we look forward to. And yet, they provide the growth spurts of the Christian life. Suffering is never welcomed, but it is never a waste of our time.
Lord, help me to be a learner every day, not just in times of suffering. When times of suffering do come, help me depend on You for strength and thank You for the growth I will experience in the valley. In Jesus' name. Amen.