(William Secker, "The Consistent Christian" 1660)
Sin is pleasant—but unprofitable.
Affliction is unpleasant—but profitable.
By affliction, the Lord separates the sin that He hates—from the soul that He loves. He sends affliction—to take the dirt of the world out of the hearts of His children! "Before I was afflicted I went astray—but now I keep Your word!" Psalm 119:67
As waters are purest, when they are in motion—so saints are generally holiest, when in affliction. Some Christians resemble those doltish children, who will learn their lessons—no longer than while the rod is on their backs! In the greatest affliction—the Lord has sealed the sweetest instruction, "It was good for me to be afflicted—so that I could learn Your statutes!" Psalm 119:71
Many Christians are not bettered by the judgments they see—when they have bettered by the judgments they have felt. The gold is refined—by being in the furnace! Likewise, with the Christian, "I have refined you in the furnace of suffering!" Isaiah 48:10