Friday, September 4, 2015

"In This You Rejoice" - Why Life is Hard

"Psalm 91: Under God's Protection," by Melanie Pyke. The painting depicts an hatchlings under the care and protection of their (mother?) in the middle of a downpour.
1 Peter 1:6-7
6 In this you rejoice, though now, for a little while, if necessary, you have been grieved by various trials, 7 so that the tested genuineness of your faith—more precious than gold that perishes though it is tested by fire—may be found to result in praise and glory and honor at the revelation of Jesus Christ.

Have you ever wondered why God doesn't just make life easy? Why does He allow His children to go through stress, sadness, sickness, weariness, and sometimes, even danger? Why doesn't He just send angels do everything that we don't want to do... like chores... or homework!

God assures us that there is a reason why. He loves us. He want us to become mature, tried and tested, thoroughly trained. In one sense, life for the Christian is one, big training camp, where God is building up our spiritual muscles in preparation for the main event: the revelation of Jesus Christ. Job 23:10 says, “But he knows the way that I take; when he has tried me, I shall come out as gold.” Just as people put gold into a blazing hot furnace to purify it from impurities, so God takes us through trials to refine us. He's making spiritual gold, a priceless treasure, and that's us.

Would you believe it? Us? You mean us, who get angry, and worry all the time, and sometimes take advantage of others, neglect others, and degrade others? You mean the us who often succumb to vanity, gossip, lust, laziness, and pride? Yes, us. Even though we had nothing of value in ourselves, God gave us new life in the Holy Spirit, and He's training us to live according to that new life. Praise God!

God wants us to grasp this truth about trials so well that we can rejoice in any situation. So, when we find ourselves in less-than-ideal situations, let's look beyond it and see God's hand at work, lovingly maturing us into the sons and daughters He wants us to be.

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