Many authors have hashed this out in many different ways. I'm hashing this out in a very elementary way to help me understand more fully.
As I stood at my stove a few weeks ago, wishing I had more children, I realized my joy, my faith is witness to those around me who know my wish. I am a shining light for Jesus because I suffer. I want. Yet I believe and trust.
I stood in line at the pool concession stand yesterday. Earlier in the day, I had burned my hand and I needed a steady stream of ice water to cool the burn. The ice water had turned tepid and my hand was on fire. I thought about asking the kids at the front if I could cut. I know them from Religious Ed. They would have gladly let me in. As I contemplated what to do, I started to think about women around the world who burned their hands that day trying to cook on open fire. Certainly it happens all the time if I I burned my hand on my first world stove. I thought of dirt floors and bare feet and tin walls. I thought of flies buzzing and dirty water and humid air. I prayed for these women and their families as I waited in pain. The pain connected me. It opened me up. It humbled me. I was thankful for it.
The joy in suffering isn't just a page in a book anymore.