This is part of the "Be Encouraged--Down But Not Out" study of II Corinthians, from Pastor Jim Fryer of Independent Bible Baptist Church of Pittsburg, KS.
II Corinthians 1:4-7
One of the reasons for trials is that we might learn to be channels instead of cisterns, looking for ways to be an encouragement to others and not live for ourselves.
When we travel the road of suffering we can assist others. (Jude 22; Heb. 13:3; Acts 20:35; Rom. 15:1)
II Corinthians 12: no matter what we are going through, "My grace is sufficient for thee." (Vs. 9)
Suffering is one of the mysteries of God we might never understand until we get to heaven.
Sometimes we suffer because of our sins. (Jonah)
Sometimes we suffer to keep us from sinning. (II Cor 12:7)
Suffering can perfect our character. (Rom 5:1-5)
Suffering can help us share the character of God. (Heb. 12:1-11)
But in all things we choose to become better or bitter. If we rebel instead of submit then our trials will work against us instead of for us. The ability to endure difficulties patiently without giving up is a mark of spiritual growth. (Heb. 12:1-7)