Ready “Count 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 [NIV]
Set Cut from the team. Knee blows out senior year. Lost the state title. Playing time disappears. Your mistake costs the team a win. As a competitor, all these things are considered tough trials. Add to that academic pressure or conflict at home and you can feel overwhelmed. Character is uncovered in crisis and formed in the fire. It will be revealed and refined. When we are squeezed, what comes out shows us what’s inside. In order for God to truly transform us, it takes time, pressure, and heat. He forms our character the same way he forms diamonds. When the element carbon is forced to go deeper beneath the surface of the earth it encounters extreme temperatures and pressure. Those extreme conditions make diamonds. And when they rise again to the surface, they display the brilliance of the light. God uses trials to make us unshakeable and Him unmistakable. The more "heat and pressure" we feel, the more "heart and presence" of God we experience. In 2 Corinthians 1:3-6 we are told God comforts us so we can comfort others. When we face trials, we can do it with joy, expecting that God will use every piece of the pressure and pain to produce perseverance and maturity. Let your character be formed in the fire.
Go 1. Have you experience adversity or trials that have tested your faith? 2. What are the purposes of the pain we suffer in this life? 3. How important is it to have others walk with you through your trials?
Workout 1 Peter 4:12-16 2 Corinthians 1:3-6 Proverbs 17:17
Overtime Father, I know that storms are not optional, but inevitable. Use these trials to transform me and change me into the person you have made me to be. Let me rejoice when I face trials and struggles and trust that you have a reason. Form my character through the fire. Amen.
1 Peter 4