For many years, after I started following Jesus, I would pray that God would take me out of my circumstances when I was experiencing trouble, hardship, suffering or pain. I did not realize that He had allowed those situations for a purpose.
I discovered many years later that I was actually praying for Him to take away the very things that were designed to strengthen me in my walk with the Lord. I no longer see suffering as a negative event in my life because He is always with me and I am getting to know Him more intimately.
The fellowship I have with the Lord in those situations, no matter how long it may last, is more valuable than a lifestyle of comfort and ease. When my thoughts are distracted away from God it may seem harmless at first but eventually I feel the effect of my complacency.
I am so grateful that regaining my awareness of His presence enables me to have fellowship with Him. In every form of adversity I can find contentment simply by enjoying the reality of His faithfulness.