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At noon, darkness fell across the whole land until three o’clock. Then, at that time Jesus called out with a loud voice, “Eloi, Eloi, lema sabachthani?” which means, “My God, my God, why have you forsaken me?” Mark 15:33-34 (NLT)

Some of you are called to suffer in your minds, not because of any wrong but for the sake of others. Some years ago, I preached a sermon from the text, “My God, My God, why have You forsaken Me?” (Mark 15:34). I preached my own cry. I felt an agony of spirit. I was under an awful sense of being forsaken by God, and I could not understand why I was surrounded by such thick darkness. I wanted to clear myself if any sin remained in me, but I could not discover any evil that I was tolerating.

When I went back into the vestry, I learned the secret of my personal distress. There was an elderly man in a horror of great darkness. He said,  “I have never met any person who has been where I am. I trust there is hope.” I asked him to sit down, and we talked. I hope I conducted him from the verge of insanity to the open healthy place of peace through believing. I could never have helped if I had not been in the miry clay myself. Then I understood why I felt like one forsaken. The Lord was leading me to where I would be taught to know this man, to where I would be willing to sit with him in the dark prison–house and lend him a hand to escape.

In presenting myself to my Lord for service since then, I have said to Him, “Make me useful to the doubting and depressed. I do not bargain for comfort, peace, or joy if I can be more helpful to Your poor, weary children without them. Place me where I can best answer Your purpose by being made to sympathize with Your troubled people. I only want to bring them to heaven, to the praise of the glory of Your grace. As for me, let me rejoice or suffer as best suits their case.”

For this you must have faith in God and be sure that your trials will have great compensation. Be satisfied to endure hardness with the full belief that it is all right and that God will not only bring you through, but also bless somebody through your trials.

— Charles Spurgeon

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