The Grace of Suffering
"Suffering is a great grace; through suffering the soul becomes like the Saviour; in suffering love becomes crystallised; the greater the suffering, the purer the love. (57)" -St. Faustina
We all have experienced some kind of suffering in our lives, and it seems by the grace of God that He seems to allow us to experience a similar suffering time and time again. Why does the Lord allow us to keep experiencing a emotional suffering or spiritual suffering or physical suffering? Because He knows the suffering that we are best able to endure and then survive because of our strength. We know that the Father only gives His children what they can handle, and I think it makes sense that throughout our journey in life we are confronted with similar situations that result in a familiar kind of suffering.
For me the most familiar suffering that I have experienced throughout the course of my young adult life is emotional suffering, which can be considered a curse, but it is also a blessing. Emotional suffering is a curse because the scars inflicted upon you are worn from the inside, where you can still wake up each morning with a cheerful grin on your face and allow others to believe everything is fine. But emotional suffering is also a blessing, especially when you know that each time it happens you gain more wisdom and strength.
I feel that we do learn from experience, and each time I am confronted with emotional suffering it takes less time for me to recover, and I am able to forgive much sooner than the previous time. I embrace the emotional suffering that I have experienced and I bear my cross because I love the Lord, and I have done and continue to do whatever is His will. Jesus suffered on the cross to save all of us from our sins and I know that it is through the suffering we experience in this world that we grow even closer to Christ and we are there with him at the foot of the cross. I have learned to be able to offer up any suffering to the cross, and for others. Through the pain and hurt that I experienced in religious life and in my departure from my former religious community I have found solace and peace in watching friends of mine have joy as they move forward in their journey of formation in religious life and I am able to experience that joy along with them.