By Eric Davis - Posted at The Cripplegate:
The more young pastors I speak with, the more I realize that crushing experiences are the norm. It’s constant. “Didn’t think it would be like this.”
In response, I’ve said it. “This is crushing.” “I’m crushed.” “God, you’re crushing me.” Everything I feel tells me so. Crushed in spirit. Crushed in body. Crushed from every direction.
But I’m wrong. Feelings deceives. “I’m crushed” is bad theology for pastors. “We are afflicted in every way, but not crushed” (2 Cor. 4:8). If the apostle Paul was not crushed, then I certainly am not.
The inerrant Bible is better at sensory than my senses. “Crushed” means something like, “irreparably shattered into many irregularly-shaped pieces due to an outside, destructive force.” But that can’t happen to God’s children. “My Father, who has given them to me, is greater than all, and no one is able to snatch them out of the Father’s hand” (John 10:29). God’s hand can’t be irreparably shattered. Nothing in it can be either.
The Greek word translated, “afflicted,” carries the idea of “press.” I need to tell myself the truth, then. “I’m pressed, but not crushed.” “God, you’re pressing, but not crushing me.”