This is a translation from “Day by Day”, the Russian book of scriptural meditations.
Scripture: “Who sinned, this man or his parents, that he was born blind?..neither this man nor his parents, but this happened so that the work of God might be displayed in his life” (John: 9: 2,3)
"Are sorrows sent to us as punishment for sins? In ancient times people thought so. But the Savior gives another explanation. He said that the man was blind in order that the power of God be revealed in him. His blindness brought him to Jesus and thus brought him a double mercy: he acquired sight both physically and spiritually. He probably would never have met Jesus had he not been blind, and would not have experienced this miracle.
“Very often great mercies also come to us through our sorrows. Lazarus’s sickness led to “God’s glory”, according to Jesus’s words, – “so that God’s Son may be glorified through it.” (John: 11, 4). There is no doubt that any sickness can be an occasion for the sick person or those around him to receive a blessing from above. The Lord often glorifies those who suffer through trials sent to them. Every loss should open our eyes to a deep truth, and every disappointment in life is meant to bring us something much better than the happiness we expected.”
Here is what Lewis writes in “Letters to Malcolm” (letter 20):
“most real good that has been done me in this life has involved [suffering]”
In my life, I have sometimes subsequently understood the purpose of my sufferings. But like the author of another of the above meditations says, “The time will come when in the afterlife we will understand the meaning of our sufferings and will thank the Lord for them.”
“Love is patient and kind. Love is not jealous or boastful or proud or rude. Love does not demand its own way. Love is not irritable, and it keeps no record of when it has been wronged. It is never glad about injustice but rejoices whenever the truth wins out. Love never gives up, never loses faith, is always hopeful, and endures through every circumstance. Love will last forever.” (1 Corinthians 13: 4-8)