Thursday, August 29, 2013

Growth Through Trials

The righteous shall flourish like the palm tree: he shall grow like a cedar in Lebanon.  –Psalm 92:12 (KJV)

No doubt you have a number of photographs sitting somewhere in your home, maybe in a box or a drawer.  If you are anything like me, you have thought for years about putting those pictures in an album.  I admire anyone who accomplishes this, yet these days the entire process has evolved into something much larger.  For countless people, it is not enough place the photos in an album, but instead they are “scrap-booked.” Each picture appears on the page of a scrapbook with designs, quotes, and other artistic elements relative to the scene.  My wife and some of her friends pursue these photo scrapbooks and the results are impressive.  I observe with great admiration, but that is about it.  I am still doing well to get the picture in a photo album.

I share this because God is always working to take us deeper; the Lord takes us deeper into His Word, prayer, ministry, love, and spiritual gifts.  God grows and stretches us.  He becomes involved in the day-to-day processes of our lives all the while empowering us to walk forward in life-changing, vibrant faith.  He does not put our picture in a drawer and forget us.  I read a quote many years ago that said, “If God had a mantle, your picture would be on it.” God does indeed love us personally and deeply.

Only you and the Lord know what struggles you are facing right now.  Allow me to encourage you with the assurance that the Lord knows, cares, and understands exactly what you are going through.  God cares and will give you peace and joy in the midst of whatever you are facing.  Seek to grow in this trial.  Seek a closer relationship with Christ as you walk forward through whatever difficulty you are encountering. 

Be faithful, keep your eyes on Christ, and believe upon His Word.  Do not surrender to doubt and fear.  A better and brighter day is coming.

God bless you today.