Now if you were really spiritual you might have
responded to this question by saying, "joy reminds me of the
fruit of the Spirit". Wow!, how commendable. However, just try using
the word joy and the word affliction in the same sentence and people
will consider you "significantly challenged", even strange.
But perhaps it’s not that strange
after all, for we read in 1Peter, Beloved, think it not strange
concerning the fiery trial which is to try you, as though some strange thing happened
unto you: But (oh,
oh, here comes the “R” word) REJOICE
How could the Apostle Paul
make such a statement? Because he had come to learn, trials and hardships being his instructors,
that each of these presented him the opportunity of manifesting the life of the
Lord Jesus Christ through his reactions to them.
YOU MIGHT WANT TO READ THAT
For this to take place in our lives
we are going to have to develop some godly habits when it comes to our response
to trials. Understand this, it has been ordained from the very lips of the FATHER
that if you are His child, you will have your life (faith) severely tested
in the fiery furnace of affliction. There are no
exceptions, and certainly there are no exemptions.
Now we can either go along dragging
our heals and resisting the work of God all the way, or we can relax and enjoy
the process knowing that God is going to be glorified in the process.
Manifesting the life of the LORD JESUS CHRIST in our bodies does not happen by
accident but stems from a life that is constantly relying and taking advantage
of the grace of God. (1Corinthians 15:10)
we, is it possible, as did the Apostle Paul, come to enjoy difficulties? We can
if we have the proper perspective on things. And he said
unto me, My grace is sufficient for thee: for my strength is made perfect in weakness.
Most gladly therefore will I rather glory in my infirmities, that the power of
Christ may rest upon me. Therefore I take pleasure in infirmities, in reproaches,
in necessities, in persecutions, in distresses for Christ’s sake: for when I am
weak, then am I strong. (2Corinthians 12:8-10)
The Bible admonishes us in 2Corinthians
13:5; Examine yourselves as to whether
you are in the faith. Test yourselves. We must ask our selves this question,
Is my life a true reflection and manifestation of my LORD and Savior, or is it
merely displaying the‘basic irritations of a life which has gone unaffected by
the unfailing love of Just God?
how do we pull this one off? Simply by having an acute awareness of our need for
God and a willingness to SURRENDER to His leadership. Only then can the
LORD move to the forefront of our lives. Yes, we must be alert; constantly bringing
every thought into captivity that would exalt itself. If not, we will give way
to self pity and complacency when are faith is tested. Yes, we must stand ready
to view our circumstances as the means God is using to exhibit the saving and
redeeming life of His Son to a lost and dying world.
THAT EXCITE YOU? IT SHOULD!
to my earnest expectation and my hope, that in nothing I shall be ashamed, but
that with all boldness, as always, so now also Christ shall be magnified in my
body, whether it be by life, or by death. For to me to live is Christ, and to
die is gain. But if I live in the flesh, this is the fruit of my labour (Phil
Know this, if God draws you into
a trial His grace will also be made available for you to bear up under it. Scriptures
reminds us, that love bears all things, (EVEN TRIALS – emphasis
added.) Discovering this truth should be liberating to the point where
we actually begin to look forward with anticipation and enjoyment how God’s glory
is going to be made manifested in our mortal bodies.
How great it is then to know
and understand what God is doing in the midst of our suffering. And how much grater
also is it to know that it is He who is orchestrating our circumstances. Although
we will be thrust in the fiery furnace of affliction, it is He whose hand controls
count it all joy when ye fall into divers temptations; Knowing
this, that the trying of your faith
worketh patience. But let patience have
her perfect work, that ye may be perfect and entire, wanting nothing.