Although the trials come, we know that Christ said they would. “In the world ye shall have tribulation: but be of good cheer; I have overcome the world” (John 16:33). Jesus told us these things must come to pass. Jesus saw the wars to come, the famines, even the gas prices, the Lord knows them all, and knew they would come. So, what can we do? We can glory in our infirmities and see it as a joyous occasion that we are in manifold temptations. This should be a time of returning to God in repentance for sin.
Christians, we should be praying and seeking God’s face through these trials and temptations. This is not even close to the sufferings of our brethren in ages past. Yet, to use their suffering as an example, when they found themselves in chains, hungering, thirsting, and torturing, they turned to the only deliverer, the LORD Jesus Christ. They followed the Holy Scriptures, which God uses to show us the wisdom of his heart.
“My brethren, count it all joy when ye fall into divers temptations; Knowing this, that the trying of your faith worketh patience. But let patience have her perfect work, that ye may be perfect and entire, wanting nothing”James 1:2-4
What is it other than joy that the Lord’s will is done? Can we deny that it is God’s will that we may experience hard times? Brethren, let us look at the reason. We are tried, rather our faith is tried, as a shield is forged and tried in fire. It is tempered, it is made robust. When we rely on God through the trials we face, God shows us that he is there with us, helping and comforting us. That makes us rest in him. This is the patience that God wants us to have, that we may rest in his grace and mercy, and his alone. Think of the trial as a question: Are you trusting in the Lord? Is he your confidence? Is he your guide? These are hard to answer when we rely on the government or someone else, so God shows us that these entities are vanity.
Moreover, there may be a lack of faith in our lives. Perhaps we have allowed a rusty hole to develop in the shield of faith. We may have great need of repairs, so God sends the trial to give us patience, and his patience causes us to rest in him, and while we rest, he repairs our faith, that we may not have a lack of necessary faith. Our faith in Christ is what overcomes the world (1 John 5:4), and we are the light of the world (Matthew 5:14), so why is it so hard for the modern Christians to overcome in trials, especially when we can call upon the Lord for help? We cannot overcome the world if we have a lack of faith, and they will not see our light if we have a lack of faith.
Understand this, O Christian, that the trial of our faith is much more precious than gold, and even if it is tried, tempered, and beaten before it is strengthened, it is a praiseworthy thing unto the Lord Jesus Christ, and is a reason to rejoice in him, even if you feel as if we should be depressed (1 Peter 1:6-7). The one thing that trials should not do, is cause us to reject God’s help and turn to the dead world for aid instead. Let us use this time to turn back to God with our weakened or damaged shields, and repair the faith that was broken before. Let us again, “have faith in God” (Mark 11:22).
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