We feel entitled to comfort and convenience, yet when we observe true followers of Christ in the Bible, and even Christ himself, they had neither comfort nor convenience – in fact, they suffered through much more than most of us would say we could handle BUT….they had a fire inside of them that could not be put out. Their faith was somehow not as shaken as mine probably would be given their circumstances. I’m about to introduce a somewhat radical idea (at least for me anyway): Discomfort and suffering can actually be beautiful experiences that God can use to build up our faith. Now I am not saying that we all need to go out into the desert without food and water and wait for something amazing to happen, but I am saying that instead of asking God to change our circumstances, to remove our current struggles and sufferings, we should rather BEG God to use what we’re going through now to strengthen our faith, to prepare us for more trials. Because let’s be honest, life is never going to 100% peachy. Whether you’re rich or poor, whether you’re single or married, whether you’re in Africa or America…everybody’s going through something. The trials don’t end, the struggles continue. I feel as though it’s foolish to ask God to get rid of everything we’re going through because with the right attitude and prayers, those are the very things that should draw us so much closer to Him, those are the things that should build up our faith despite our circumstances (just like some of the people we read about in the Bible) – and that is so pleasing to God!
Dear brothers and sisters, when troubles come your way, consider it an opportunity for great joy. For you know that when your faith is tested, your endurance has a chance to grow. So let it grow, for when your endurance is fully developed, you will be perfect and complete, needing nothing. – James 1:2-4