In Faith, Trials on
24 March, 2016

Thank God for Grace (And Starting Over)

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joy-in-suffering

It was one of those days—one of those days when I just really wanted to throw my head back in frustration and ask God, “Really? Can anything else go wrong?”

And literally, just after the words, “This day keeps getting worse and worse,” rolled off my tongue, something else happened.

As you can imagine, I felt like a volcano preparing to erupt. 

It was the icing on the cake of an already bad day, and it just about put me over the edge.

The truth is this: my sinful heart desires to be in control. And the truth is this: sometimes I really struggle to just let it go.

Sometimes I attempt to play tug-of-war with God. Sometimes I make agendas and to-do lists just so my mind can be at ease instead of trusting God and surrendering my life and my plans to Him. But eventually, when enough things go wrong and I finally reach my breaking point, it seems there’s nothing I can do but let go and fall to the ground.

While that may not sound like a very loving thing for God to allow, I know He does so because He loves me. He wants to remind me who He is. He wants to remind me that I can trust Him with my life, and that I don’t have to do this on my own.

But when I fall, He’s the one to catch me.

And let me tell you, I do fall. I am never promised an easy life as a follower of Christ. I am never promised not to fall. In fact, as a child of God who has been saved by grace though faith in Jesus Christ, I know I will face fiery trials:

Beloved, do not be surprised at the fiery trial when it comes upon you to test you, as though something strange were happening to you. 1 Peter 4:12

I also know that it is a joy when I do face those trials:

But rejoice insofar as you share Christ’s sufferings, that you may also rejoice and be glad when his glory is revealed. 1 Peter 4:13

And it’s a joy because knowing Jesus Christ is worth whatever I may face in this life—be it a rough workday, an illness, a conflict, financial struggles or anything else that may come my way:

Indeed, I count everything as loss because of the surpassing worth of knowing Christ Jesus my Lord. For his sake I have suffered the loss of all things and count them as rubbish, in order that I may gain Christ and be found in him, not having a righteousness of my own that comes from the law, but that which comes through faith in Christ, the righteousness from God that depends on faith—that I may know him and the power of his resurrection, and may share his sufferings, becoming like him in his death, that by any means possible I may attain the resurrection from the dead. Philippians 3:8-11

So today, even if I feel like lashing out, I will choose to stop. Get on my knees. Reflect on the difficulty I’m facing. Repent of my sin in the midst of those difficulties. Remember that God will never leave me. Thank Him for a new opportunity to trust Him. And get up. And start again.

Thank God for grace.

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