It is good for a man that he bear the yoke in his youth.
All Commentaries on Lamentations 3:27 Go To Lamentations 3
For affliction is an unbroken bond, the increase of love, the occasion for reserve and piety. Hear the words of David, “It is good for me that I have been afflicted, that I might learn your statutes.” And again another prophet, who says, “It is good for a person that he bears the yoke in his youth.” And again, “Blessed is the one whom you chasten, O Lord.” And another who says, “Despise not the chastening of the Lord.” And “if you come near to serve the Lord, prepare your soul for temptation. And Christ also said to his disciples, “In the world you shall have tribulation, but be of good cheer.” And again, “You shall weep and lament, but the world shall rejoice.” And again, “Narrow and straitened is the way.” Do you see how tribulation is everywhere lauded, everywhere assumed as needful for us? For if in the contests of the world, no one without this receives the crown unless he fortifies himself by work, by abstinence from the finer things of life, by living according to rule, by being vigilant, and innumerable other things, much more so here. For whom will you name as an instance? The king? Not even he lives a life free from care, but one burdened with much tribulation and anxiety. For look not to his diadem but to his sea of cares, by which the crown is produced for him. Nor look to his purple robe but to his soul, which is darker than that purple. His crown does not so closely bind his brow, as care does his soul. Nor look to the multitude of his spearmen but to the multitude of his disquietudes. For it is not possible to find a private house laden with so many cares as a king’s palace. Violent deaths are each day expected, and a vision of blood is seen as they sit down to eat and drink. Nor can we say how often he is disturbed in the night and leaps up, haunted with visions. And all this in peace; but if war should overtake him, what could be more piteous than such a life as this! What evils has he from those that are his own, I mean, those who are under his dominion. In actuality, the pavement of a king’s house is always full of blood, the blood of his own relations.… But as I said, life cannot be without pain. For if in the affairs of this world even he who is accounted most happy, if the king is burdened with so many misfortunes, what do you think must be true of private life?