This is why I love the cruciform theosis teachings of the Eastern Church, which folks like Dr. Michael Gorman in Methodism have adopted. It states we must share in the faithfulness of Christ and his sufferings per crucifixion which for us is baptism and daily dying to the flesh. The health and wealth gospel of the Osteens and Meyers of the world utterly contradicts the heart of the New Covenant.
The Christian life and thus the abundant life are not pain and suffering free. Living the abundant life isn’t about some freedom from struggles, pain, hardships, or problems in the physical, mental, emotional, social, or spiritual sense. To be free from these things, from sufferings, is to flee the Cross in utter abandonment. It is the opposite of the Christian life. Christ suffered. Mystically we suffer with him through all the pain and hardships of life. He bore these things on the Cross. We bear them on ours in baptism. Thus through death we have life, the real and true abundant life, glorified in resurrection with our Savior.
Expect hell on earth.
Expect the Cross.
Expect the Tomb.
Heaven here and now.
Triumph over death.
Crucify thyself for through the Cross joy has entered unto the world. That is the only plan and it is for our salvation. And it isn’t easy, pain or struggle free, wealthy, or glorious by worldly standards, but it is the riches of heaven. These are true riches.
Go forth in struggle and suffering with Christ.
“We needed an Incarnate God, a God put to death, that we might live. We were put to death together with Him, that we might be cleansed; we rose again with Him because we were put to death with Him; we were glorified with Him, because we rose again with Him. Many indeed are the miracles of that time: God crucified; the sun darkened and again rekindled; for it was fitting that the creatures should suffer with their Creator; the veil rent; the Blood and Water shed from His Side; the one as from a man, the other as above man; the rocks rent for the Rock’s sake; the dead raised for a pledge of the final Resurrection of all men; the Signs at the Sepulchre and after the Sepulchre, which none can worthily celebrate; and yet none of these equal to the Miracle of my salvation. A few drops of Blood recreate the whole world, and become to all men what rennet is to milk, drawing us together and compressing us into unity.”
St Gregory of Nazianzus