[Yet I, like a trusting lamb led to slaughter,
had not realized that they were hatching plots against me:
“Let us destroy the tree in its vigor;
let us cut him off from the land of the living,
so that his name will be spoken no more.”]. (Jer. 11:19)
The prophet Jeremiah is no stranger to suffering . He gives us an example of how to react to our own sufferings—like a trusting lamb led to the slaughter. Jeremiah suggests a serene trust in God during suffering, a patient endurance, and fidelity amidst uncertainty.
Though Jesus too was led like a lamb to the slaughter, He, unlike Jeremiah, had no doubt and knew exactly the deadly plots of His persecutors. Jesus chose to persevere, enduring His passion and death because He knew that by it He would accomplish our salvation. Jesus knew His suffering was not pointless. He knew His suffering was going to be redemptive. His suffering was going to have meaning.
Suffering can catch us off guard as it did Jeremiah. Things can be clipping along smoothly when out of nowhere and without warning difficulties appear.
However we must remember that amidst our many trials and tribulations, whatever they may be, Jesus stands with arms outstretched. Run to His embrace and ask Him for the grace to persevere and endure patiently whatever you are dealing with.
Suffering is sure to come. You may be uncertain as to what or when or why. However one thing is certain, your suffering has meaning. Your suffering is not pointless. Your suffering is redemptive because of the Lamb led to the slaughter with His arms outstretched and nailed to the cross.