Thursday, July 16, 2009

When it Rains, it Pours

It's almost cliche in its truth. You've probably had this happen to you, or you've seen it: right when you commit yourself to Christ and old flame calls up, or right when you're overcoming an addiction either an old drinking buddy runs into you or you have an office party with an open bar, or as you're raising money for missions work your car breaks down. I could go on, but you get the idea.

"Consider it pure joy, my brothers, whenever you face trials of many kinds, because you know that the testing of your faith develops perseverance. Perseverance must finish its work so that you may be mature and complete, not lacking anything." (James 1:2-4)

I don't' know about you, but the above is anything but joy. Interesting that this passage follows up with admonishing us to pray for wisdom while encouraging us to have faith. Facing these trials with the right heart obviously requires faith, but maturing through them requires wisdom.

My wife and I are taking a financial class by Dave Ramsey. One couple in the class had their van impounded (and they have 4 kids to haul around!), another had a flat tire, and another wife came down with a bug that required her husband to take several days of unpaid leave from his job. As for us, our a/c broke down (in the middle of July, in the desert) and my wife's bike was stolen, all within a couple of days of each other and within a few days of the other trials above. Hopefully, I'm finding the wisdom to persevere in this class.

"Endure hardship as discipline; God is treating you as sons." (Hebrews 12:7)

How ironic too, to look at this as discipline from the Lord while we're struggling with disciplining our own son.

There are times like these when I think it would be easier to just give up on following Christ all together. But I know that's not really true. These trials are only temporary, but the benefits of perseverance are eternal. Plus, I believe in a loving God which gives me hope that he, not I, knows what is best for me and my family.

"And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose." (Rom 8:28)

No comments: