Matthew 17:22 As they were gathering in Galilee, Jesus said to them, "The Son of Man is about to be delivered into the hands of men, 23 and they will kill him, and he will be raised on the third day." And they were greatly distressed.
There are times when God's will brings us great distress or sadness. Jesus experienced this same distress when the time came for Him to do His Father's will of dying on the cross. Matthew 26:38-39 Jesus said to them, "My soul is very distressed, even to death; remain here and watch with Me. And going a little farther He fell on His face and prayed saying, 'My Father, if it be possible, let this cup pass from me; nevertheless, not as I will, but as You will.'"
When God's will brings us great distress, we are to imitate Jesus. He acknowledged His distress to His Father in prayer and even asked to have God's will changed. Yet, Jesus trusted His Father enough to know His will was best for everyone. He did know He would be resurrected from the dead. He did know that sin's penalty and power would be overcome and that Satan would be defeated. He did know that all the people He loved would have the opportunity to have abundant and eternal life. He desired to not experience the pain of God's will, but desired more to do God's will even if it meant dying because He trusted God knew best.
The Apostle Paul imitated Jesus in this way of thinking and acting. 2 Timothy 2:10 "Therefore, I endure everything for the sake of the elect, that they also may obtain the salvation that is in Christ Jesus with eternal glory." Acts 20:24 "But I do not account my life of any value nor as precious to myself, if only I may finish my course and the ministry that I received from the Lord Jesus, to testify to the gospel of God's grace."
We are to imitate Paul as He imitated Jesus (1 Corinthians 11:1) All of us are to be willing to suffer great distress in the doing of God's will. Great abundance of life comes when we are willing to suffer doing God's will. No life comes if we always choose the most comfortable way. Think what would be today if Jesus decided the cross was to painful. (Note: It would be far worse than if no men and women would have stood up to Hitler). Will you do God's will no matter what? Yes? No? If yes, then the church is unstoppable and abundant and eternal life will multiply around us. If no, then wickedness, death and eternal torment will multiply while all seek their personal comfort and pain free life.
I'm asking Jesus to help me be like Him even if it causes me great distress and even death. Why? I know the best is yet to come. What about you?