Suffering and Growth

In their best-selling book The Coddling of the American Mind, Jonathan Haidt and Greg Lukianoff tell us that one of the cultural lies we and our kids have been led to believe is this: “What doesn’t kill you will make you weaker.” Consequently, our goal in life is to do whatever we can to avoid pain, believing that it will destroy us. Conversely, we believe we should pursue pleasure and comfort at any cost, believing that pleasure is redemptive. Anyone who has endured difficulty and learned great lessons knows that nothing could be further from the truth. In fact, as Christians we must recognize that nothing could be further from Gospel truth. Suffering is the fertile ground for great growth in character, wisdom, and virtue. Suffering brings us to the end of ourselves. It grows our dependence on God while undermining our dependence on our selves. I believe that we should be praying that our kids will suffer enough to lead them out of themselves, and into a deep trust and faith in God.