God still wants me to serve even when I'm suffering?
Yes! Our service to the Lord doesn't stop when a problem occurs in our lives. In fact, this should be the time when we are giving our all to the Lord and serving others. Indeed, I had to learn this the hard way. There came a point in my life when I just thought, "Is my life falling apart?" The answer to that question I nervously asked myself not too long ago was no. My life wasn't falling apart, but my feelings led me to believe so. At the time I was so caught up in myself and wondering when my situation would change, that I lost focus of the assignment the Lord had given me. It took my brokenness for the Lord to then reveal to me that He was calling me to a higher place in Him. That brokenness was just part of my process.
When we tend to focus more on our problems rather then what the Lord told us to do, then we are inevitably self absorbed. Self absorption interferes with one's ability to tune into anything else that does not involve them. In other words, you will not be able to serve others the way God intended because you will be too preoccupied with your own problems. Your very deliverance could be caught up in your service. Maybe God is just waiting for you to be obedient and stop running away from your calling. Or is He just waiting for your affliction to end so He can truly use you? Not so! If that's the way the Lord intended then no one would be in ministry. We are all faced with different trials however; God has already equipped us with strength and power through the Holy Spirit to overcome. Many of us need to be asking God "What do you want me to do in this season?" as oppose to, "When is this season going to be over?"
So what are you waiting for?
Don't wait for your problems to cease in order for the Lord to use you. This mindset will only set you up for tribulation after tribulation. Instead, choose today that regardless of what giants you face the Lord has already given you the tools and strength you need to defeat those giants. Moreover, He has equipped you to serve during your waiting season. So get busy using those gifts that the Lord placed inside of you. The very thing you may struggle with could be the gateway to a ministry God has called you to. "And we know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to his purpose" Romans 8:28. God is able to work even the ugly situations in our lives, together for our good.