July 14, 2005
You rejoice in this, though now for a short time you have had to be distressed by various trials so that the genuineness of your faith—more valuable than gold, which perishes though refined by fire—may result in praise, glory, and honor at the revelation of Jesus Christ.
--1 Peter 1:6-7 (HCSB)
Eric Liddell was a great Olympian athlete featured in the Academy Award-winning Best Picture, “Chariots of Fire.” The movie was about Eric’s faith. He ultimately became a missionary and died on the mission field. But Eric was once asked, “Since you’re a Christian and so devoted to your faith, how could you spend so much time on this activity of running?”
Eric replied, “God made me fast, and when I run, I feel His pleasure.”
Whatever you do—whether its sports, family, education, business, or life in general—it is to be totally integrated with your faith so that you can enjoy God’s pleasure. What makes God smile? Your faith. When you trust and obey Him. And when we rejoice in those trials as a testing of our faith.
Trials are to be expected and evaluated in the sense that there are many different kinds: elective, corrective, protective, and instructive. Elective trials are those that we choose ourselves. Corrective are those trials that God sends our way to discipline us. Protective are trials that God sends to keep you protected from something. And instructive trials are those God sends to teach us a lesson.
Trials are never fun, but God works together for good everything in our lives as we follow Christ. When your faith is stretched, you’ll learn to depend upon Him—which is exactly what He wants. So Scripture says to evaluate, expect, and enjoy these trials because of what God does in our lives when we go through tough times. Thank God for the trials in your life and for being in control of it all.
YOU WILL NEVER KNOW THAT GOD IS ALL YOU NEED
UNTIL YOU REALIZE THAT HE IS ALL YOU HAVE.