One of the great Christian truths that we’ve overlooked and even forgotten in our day is this: that God does his best work in our lives when he brings us to the end of ourselves through the gift of suffering. My most mature Christian friends would all say that the path to spiritual maturity and vitality has been through the refiner’s fire of suffering. None of us like suffering, and if I had my way, I would avoid it altogether. It’s not at all fun. But when we enter into difficult times, we can know that God has not forgotten us, but rather He is in the midst of doing something good. Tim Keller writes these words about suffering: “God shakes our confidence in our earthly life so that we can yearn for our heavenly life, where our joy is truly unshakable and where our wailing will be turned into dancing.” King David reminds us of this truth in Psalm 30. Take some time today to read David’s words in Psalm 30, meditate on them, and then talk about them with your kids.