Romans 5:3-5 "Not only so, but we also rejoice in suffering because we know that suffering produced perseverance; perseverance, character; and character, hope. And hope does not disappoint us, because God has poured out his love into our hearts by the Holy Spirit, whom he has given us"
Suffering. Perseverance. Character. Hope. Each one is dependant on the other.
This has been the theme of my life thus far. I discovered this verse a month or two my senior year of high school right after I tore my ACL playing basketball. In a high school students mind who plays sports, it is as if life is over if you injure yourself your senior year. The scholarship that I was seeking to play basketball was no longer available to me...I was devastated. But through that time of suffering, I asked God a lot of tough questions, and He was faithful to answer. I have clung to this verse over the years, and believe that it will be one that I will continually go back to through out my entire life.
I believe that God allows us to go through tough situations, struggle and suffer because it draws us closer and opens our eyes to see more of Him. Our sufferings takes us deeper into the realms of God's character and enlarges our vision of Him. It is in these times that our character is refined to be more like Jesus.