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I don’t know about you, but when a trial comes into my life, my first words are not usually, Thank You, God. How do you want to use this in my life? In fact, you’ll probably hear some groaning and complaining. Rather than looking for what God is doing in the midst of it, often I’m looking for the way out.

thankyougod 300x151 Guest Post:  Trials Come So That…

Some trials are short-lived and have an easy way out. But some trials, authored and allowed by the hand of God don’t. We must journey through the valley, even fall into the pit, before we can come out the other side. But God promises in His Word that our trial, though steeped in pain, sorrow and sadness, has purpose.

Our “so that” verse for today from James 1:2-4 says,

“Consider it pure joy, my brothers, whenever you face trials of many kinds, because you know that the testing of your faith develops perseverance. Perseverance must finish its work so that you may be mature and complete, not lacking anything.” (NIV, emphasis added)

[Excerpt from Chapter Four, "Trials Come So That," of Living So That]

In June 1986, I learned firsthand circumstances come into our lives that can destroy everything we know to be good and true.

Just days after my college graduation, I walked into my home to find an armed, masked man standing at the top of my stairs. The afternoon he spent in my apartment transformed my life forever. Even as I write this, it takes me back to a desperate time and reminds me of the years of terror, despair and hopelessness in which I lived.

For the days and months following my attack, I shook my fist at God, asking ‘How could You sit on Your throne in heaven and allow the horrible things that man did to me?’ Night after night I lay in my bed, tears soaking my pillow. Questions plagued my mind. ‘Why didn’t You protect me? Why didn’t You warn me? Why did You abandon me?’ Well-meaning friends would tell me that God had a purpose, that He would bring good out of it. I knew they meant well. But how could they utter such ridiculous statements? No good would ever come from what happened to me that day. What possible purpose could there be for the vile acts that man committed against me?

You see, at the time I was raped, I was unfamiliar with the Bible. Oh, I had read it now and again, but I didn’t know God’s Word. I didn’t know that the Bible spoke to the very questions I was asking, not once, but many times. Once God equipped me with the truths and promises found in His Word, understanding and healing came.

Being equipped with truth enables us to face trials from an entirely different perspective. How I wish I’d had that perspective in June 1986. But I’m certain if I had, I wouldn’t be writing these words today.

It’s hard to understand why God allows, sometimes even authors, pain and suffering. Scripture reveals God working this way in the lives of even His greatest servants like Joseph and Job. Why would a good and loving God choose to work out His plans this way? The answer comes in remembering Who God is. God is our Creator and our Father. Psalm 139 tells us God knows when we sit and stand… discerns our coming and going…that there is nowhere we can flee from His presence, and that all our days were ordained by Him before a single one is lived out.

As our Father, He has our best interests at heart, just as loving, caring parents have a child’s best interests at heart. Sometimes He allows trials to refine us to make us more like Him. Sometimes He uses them to strengthen our faith. And sometimes another one of His children may need to see the hope and healing of Christ demonstrated in us in order to grow in her faith.

But there is one thing of which we can be certain…when we respond to trials with faith and trust and when we keep our eyes on God’s truths and promises in the midst of them, we will persevere. Each step of courageous perseverance builds on the next until we come out the other side a mature believer, not lacking anything.

Be encouraged today in your trial. God has allowed this unspeakable hurt…this seemingly hopeless circumstance … so that you will grow and mature and go deeper still in your walk with God, pointing others to the hope and healing found in Christ, thereby bringing Him glory and honor and praise.

WendyBlight Guest Post:  Trials Come So That…

Wendy Blight – In addition to being the author of InScribed’s Living “So That” : Making Faith-Filled Choices in the Midst of a Messy Life, Wendy is a national speaker with Proverbs 31 Ministries, a Bible teacher, an attorney, and author of Hidden Joy in a Dark Corner: The Transforming Power of God’s Story. Wendy most enjoys helping women, through Bible study, gain confidence so that they can tackle any problem life presents through God’s Word. Wendy’s favorite place to be is at home in Charlotte, North Carolina writing and enjoying life with her husband, Monty, and her two children, Lauren and Bo. Living So That is available now.

Living So That Guest Post:  Trials Come So That…

(http://inscribedstudies.com/)

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