Monday, March 23, 2015

The Blessings of Trials

The enemy wants us to doubt God's love. When we go through difficult times, trials, and hardships, we are tempted to question God's love in our lives. 

"Why did He take away my loved one from me? Why did He allow me to suffer from this sickness? Why doesn't He bring me out from my endless debts? I just got through from one problem and now there's another?  Why do bad things happen to me? Doesn't He know I am a good person? Does God still love me?"  

God's love is not measured by the "blessings" we receive such as good health, wealth, stable jobs, successful businesses and careers, opportunities, people, etc. We often think, rather we want to believe, that these are what we call blessings. Yes. These are good gifts from God. These of course are blessings. But these are not the ONLY blessings in life. If good things happen to us, we think we deserve those blessings. If bad things happen to us, we question, "I am a good person, but why did this happen to me?"  Then we are quick to accuse God of being not a good God. If it's good, we think we deserve or we earn it. We think God owes us a blessing if we remain to be good or do good works.

Why not ask yourself, "If I receive good things in life from God, why then God can't allow bad things to happen to me?" "Wouldn't it be unfair for others if only good things happen to me and never a single bad thing?" "Jesus Christ went through sufferings, then who am I to be exempt?" 

Don't you know that trials and hardships are blessings in disguise? As much as God wants us to shower good gifts, He wants us to be people of character. A character like His Son, Jesus Christ. God is more interested in our character than having multiple bank accounts, being a CEO of a company, being famous, being physically attractive, etc.

How then are characters molded? By earning wealth? By gaining many friends? By being famous? By being politically powerful? No. It is through trials, hardships, struggles, pressures, difficult times, and downfalls that characters are formed. God is more interested seeing us how we respond to moments like this. He is more interested in purifying us from all our impurities so we can become the people God has destined us to be. 

Blessings not only come through good health, good wealth, good jobs, etc. They also come in an unexpected, ugly packages like trials and problems . And when we go through these ugly times of our lives, know that God will never leave us alone. He will sustain us with His love and grace as we go through difficult times.  More often than not, we take it for granted. We think God doesn't care. Truth is, we refuse to see that His love is working in us and for us. We are so imprisoned by our own set of love standards that cause us to overlook the freedom Christ Jesus has given us. It takes special grace to break away from our limited definition of love. It takes countless and lifetime refinement process for us to grow and mature.

The next time you are going through tough times and are tempted to question the capacity and validity of God's love for you, look to the cross. That is the ultimate love God has for you.

[Journal entry: March 17, 2015]

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