Do we really think that we should share in Christ’s suffering? Most of us may read these verses and agree with them, but when it comes down to brass tacks, we all want the easy way out. But suffering is the way of a true Christ follower.
Does following in His footsteps include sharing in the suffering of Christ? Yep, it does. Have we bought into the lie that the Gospel of Christ is only about health, wealth, happiness, and fun? I would argue there is more suffering in our new life with Him, rather than less. But there is true joy and fulfillment in the midst of trying times than without Him.
In addition to God refining our character during these times, He also is preparing us to comfort others who are going through or will go through something similar. It is often during these times that a new purpose and ministry towards others is born. Plus, the suffering we are going through pales in comparison to eternity.
Through life in Christ, we can and should! Otherwise, we lessen the power of Christ’s death on the cross.