And he said to all, “If anyone would come after me, let him deny himself and take up his cross daily and follow me. Luke 9:23 esv
Pain causes us to identify with Jesus Christ. If we had our choice we would obviously choose a different way to draw nearer to the Lord. However, this is the path that any true disciple must tread. In Acts 5:40-42 the disciples were overjoyed after being beaten for preaching in Jesus name. Why? Because they were considered worthy to suffer for the name of Christ. A sincere follower of Jesus will suffer with joy knowing that they are becoming more like Jesus.
Christ commands you to carry your cross daily. That is, to take on adversity just as Jesus did. Just think about it. When do you read your Bible the most? When do you pray with the utmost fervor? At what times in your life do you seek God the most? When you are suffering! Don’t run from trials. Inadvertently you are running from growing in Christ. Accept suffering for Christ as a privilege and a necessary means to grow!