Affliction Sometimes Proves a Blessing to a Person’s Soul – J. C. Ryle
J. C. Ryle, “The Gospel of Matthew” 1856
A Canaanite woman from that vicinity came to
Him, crying out, “Lord, Son of David, have mercy
on me! My daughter is suffering terribly from
demon possession!” Matthew 15:22
We see here, that affliction sometimes proves
a blessing to a person’s soul.
This Caananitish mother no doubt had been
severely tried. She had seen her darling child
vexed with a devil, and been unable to relieve
her. But yet that trouble brought her to Christ,
and taught her to pray. Without it she might
have lived and died in careless ignorance, and
never seen Jesus at all. Surely it was good for
her that she was afflicted. (Psalm 119:71)
Let us mark this well. There is nothing which
shows our ignorance so much as our impatience
under trouble. We forget that every trial is a
message from God—and intended to do us
good in the end. Trials are intended . . .
to make us think,
to wean us from the world,
to send us to the Bible,
to drive us to our knees.
Health is a good thing. But sickness
is far better, if it leads us to God.
Prosperity is a great mercy. But adversity
is a greater one, if it brings us to Christ.
Anything, anything is better than living in
carelessness, and dying in sin. Better a
thousand times be afflicted, like the
Canaanitish mother, and like her flee
to Christ; than live at ease, like the rich
“fool,” and die at last without Christ and