Adversity is a fact of life --- it's how you handle it and from what perspective you see it that makes the difference!
From our perspective of life and living in this flesh, adversity is not a happy thing. With the media pouring out such warped concepts about happiness, we tend to have the idea that the Christian life is supposed to be trouble-free if we just buy something or get a certain look [with makeup, clothes, hairstyle, etc.].
We have to realize that this is a training ground. We are not going to be floating all over clouds in Heaven. There will be a purpose and we will have tasks. We are being prepared for Heaven.
Affliction isn't a thief that steals our joy unless we allow it to. It is a friend bringing the gift of staying power. It's a classroom that teaches many things. And I hear you saying, "I never did like school."
Through it all God promises us His wisdom and His strength. We can make it through with peace and joy if we will focus on His Word and Truth. He gives us all we need, but we tend to look inward to the flesh and mind to resolve such issues, and flesh will never handle spiritual issues the right way.
James 1 says we should "count it all joy" and to the flesh that sounds insane.
J. B. Phillips translates James 1:2-3 this way: "When all kinds of trials and temptations crowd into your lives, my brothers, don't resent them as intruders, but welcome them as friends. Realize that they come to test your faith and to produce in you the quality of endurance."
Smith Wigglesworth says, "All lack of faith is due to not feeding on God's Word."
Jesus paid the price so we could have joy not based on what you want life to be, but because of what God's doing in your life, even if you can't see what that is.
Do you know?
There is approximately 18 tons of pressure being exerted by the stretched steel piano strings. In a concert grand, it is close to 30 tons of pressure.
Does that give you a visual image of pressure forming beautiful music in our lives? We want to be music to others in our family and those we meet along our way in life. It seems it takes a lot of pressure to bring that beauty out of us.
God is turning us into perfect harmony for the heavenlies. That's what we are here for. It's not about us! It's about eternity!
James Creelman once journeyed through the Balkans in search of Natalie, the exiled queen of Serbia. In one of his letters he mentioned this:
" I learned that the world's supply of rose oil comes from the Balkan Mountains. The thing that interested me most was that the roses had to be gathered during the darkest hours, with the pickers starting at 1:00 AM and finishing by 2:00 AM. Initially this practice seemed to me to be a relic of superstition or tradition, but as I investigated further, I learned that actual scientific tests had proved that a full 40% of the fragrance of the roses disappeared in the light of the day."
Our character and faith is built in the darkest of times and like roses we can release a heavenly scent to others by trusting in our Father. So instead of trying to pressure God because we think He's obligated to us, we as trustful children gladly commit to Him our desires. Whatever He grants will prove in the end to be the best of blessings.
If I trust that God is for me and not against me, then I can believe that all is good in this very moment of my life.
Remember Abraham's faith with Isaac, his only son. Remember Daniel in the lion's den. Faith moves mountains in our lives. Don't give your outcome to the devil. Have faith in God!
Donna L. Watkins lives in Central Virginia with her wonderful husband enjoying birds, wildlife, gardening, forests, nature travel and her cat, Squeek. More articles can be found at TheHerbsPlace.com and a free subscription to her mailing, A Healing Moment. http://www.theherbsplace.com/ahm.html