Sometimes a builder has to pull down a house and take it apart in pieces. His job is not to pull down houses, but to build them up. But he does that which is not his job that he may do his main job. He cannot build on a rotten foundation. In the same way, God will not build on a rotten foundation. He will not build upon carnal confidence, carnal trust, pride and covetousness. He must first demolish our rotten foundation with afflictions and sufferings. He uses these things to take away any happiness we have in our trust of sin. God uses suffering and pain to force us away from our sins. He demolishes the rotten foundation, to build up a more excellent building that shall endure to eternity….He does that work which is not his main job, to do his main blessed good work. He afflicts us to drive us out of ourselves, so that we can trust in him, in whom is all our true happiness and good.
(Paraphrased from ‘The Works of Richard Sibbes’, Volume III)