This post is a continuation of Wednesdays, post titled “Enduring Trials – Part 1”.
Trials are a part of the Christian walk, and we must all learn from them if we are to receive that Crown of Life that’s promised in scripture. If you have not already read Enduring Trials – Part 1, I would suggest going and reading that first.
2 Thessalonians 1:3-5 3 We are bound to thank God always for you, brethren, as it is fitting, because your faith grows exceedingly, and the love of every one of you all abounds toward each other, 4 so that we ourselves boast of you among the churches of God for your patience and faith in all your persecutions and tribulations that you endure, 5 which is manifest evidence of the righteous judgment of God, that you may be counted worthy of the kingdom of God, for which you also suffer;
It seems from that scripture that patience and faith are the twin characteristics that will help us endure the trials of life that we all seem to go through. But, patience and faith not only help in trials, but are greatly developed in trials.
Hebrews 12:2-4 2 looking unto Jesus, the author and finisher of our faith, who for the joy that was set before Him endured the cross, despising the shame, and has sat down at the right hand of the throne of God. 3 For consider Him who endured such hostility from sinners against Himself, lest you become weary and discouraged in your souls. 4 You have not yet resisted to bloodshed, striving against sin.
Even the very Son of God endured terrible trails and sufferings. And the scriptures tell us that Jesus was made perfect, through the things He suffered. Hebrews 12:3 clearly states we need to consider what Jesus went through so that we don’t become weary and discouraged.
James 5:10-11 10 My brethren, take the prophets, who spoke in the name of the Lord, as an example of suffering and patience. 11 Indeed we count them blessed who endure. You have heard of the perseverance of Job and seen the end intended by the Lord—that the Lord is very compassionate and merciful.
He’s the same with us. God has only the very best in mind for us. So, when He allows us to go through trials, it may not seem like it at the time, but it’s for our own good.
1 Peter 2:18-20 18 Servants, be submissive to your masters with all fear, not only to the good and gentle, but also to the harsh. 19 For this is commendable, if because of conscience toward God one endures grief, suffering wrongfully. 20 For what credit is it if, when you are beaten for your faults, you take it patiently? But when you do good and suffer, if you take it patiently, this is commendable before God.
Sometimes that can make things seem even more confusing. You’re working really hard to stay on the strait and narrow, and all of a sudden some trial or ill treatment hits you. You want to react in a negative way because you’re frustrated, and you feel it’s not fair that someone is treating you badly.
It is those situations that reveal a lot about our character, by how we react to those kinds of situations.
James 1:2-3 2 My brethren, count it all joy when you fall into various trials, 3 knowing that the testing of your faith produces patience.
We’ve all read that many times, but it doesn’t’ always make it easier to deal with in the midst of a trial.
James 1:12 12 Blessed is the man who endures temptation; for when he has been approved, he will receive the crown of life which the Lord has promised to those who love Him.
It seems to be a consistent theme in the scriptures that we endure trials. That we don’t give up or get discouraged. That we never quit trusting God to help us through the trials that befall all of us. And for those that endure till the end, there will be a crown of life.
It makes me think of the scripture that talks about the trials of this life being nothing compared to the life we’ll have in the Kingdom of God.
1 Peter 1:3-7 3 Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who according to His abundant mercy has begotten us again to a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead, 4 to an inheritance incorruptible and undefiled and that does not fade away, reserved in heaven for you, 5 who are kept by the power of God through faith for salvation ready to be revealed in the last time. 6 In this you greatly rejoice, though now for a little while, if need be, you have been grieved by various trials, 7 that the genuineness of your faith, being much more precious than gold that perishes, though it is tested by fire, may be found to praise, honor, and glory at the revelation of Jesus Christ,
That is so encouraging. It’s exciting to know that the trials we deal with right now are helping to develop the faith that is more precious than gold. The faith that will help us to win the race, the faith that we’ll prepare us to receive the crown of life.
Trials are part of being a Christian. Without them God would not be able to develop the character in us that is necessary to be a part of His Kingdom. Trials, as painful and sorrowful as they can be, are a blessing and help from God and therefore we must learn to count it all joy when we go through them.