Have you ever wanted something really badly? Have you ever wanted something and believed that God was paving the way to make it happen only for it not to happen? This begins to describe the most painful parts of my life. You can probably relate.
Maybe it was the new direction for your family that seemed obvious only for things to change and not work out in the end.
Maybe it was a dream you had that gained traction, nearly became a reality, and died abruptly because of circumstances outside your control.
Maybe it was the illness you prayed would be taken away but never was.
These instances are painful. They can seem cruel. They’ve left me questioning God like nothing else. These are the times when the world seems random and chaotic. During these times, I’ve often felt stuck with nowhere to go.
I can’t make sense of these times so I won’t try. You won’t find any explanations for what God is up to in those moments here. That’s beyond me. If you’re in one of those seasons, I’m sorry. That’s it. I’m just sorry. Those seasons are terrible.
But, something interesting happens during these dark times. If you endure them faithfully, you become a better person. By better I mean, more like Jesus. Scripture points to this reality over and over again. I continually go back to these two passages…
“We can rejoice, too, when we run into problems and trials, for we know that they help us develop endurance. And endurance develops strength of character, and character strengthens our confident hope of salvation.” Romans 5:3-4
“Consider it pure joy, my brothers and sisters, whenever you face trials of many kinds, because you know that the testing of your faith produces perseverance. Let perseverance finish its work so that you may be mature and complete, not lacking anything.” James 1:2-4
If God shapes my character when I endure difficult circumstances…
Then the most difficult circumstances are what propel me forward like nothing else.
As challenging as they can be, something remarkable, something good, happens during difficult times. God shapes my character through these times in a way nothing else can. Ironically, these seasons are terrible and good at the same time.
Like I said, I’ve often felt stuck during these times. But in reality, these are the times that prepare me for the future and propel me forward like nothing else.
This is one of the key truths that brings me peace when I’m in the middle of one of those seasons.
What passages of Scripture comfort you during difficult seasons of life? I would genuinely love to know.