Trials and Perseverance: A Lesson in Relying on God
Both trials and temptations give us a chance to grow. Every time we say ‘no’ to temptation, we grow stronger in our ability to do so. And the more we declare truth when the enemy tries to lie to us and deceive us, the better we are at recognizing His lies in the first place. Trials help us to grow as well, but they are much different from temptations. Trials must be endured, and unlike temptations, God doesn’t always provide a “way out.”
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I’ve heard it said that God doesn’t give us more than we can handle. But unfortunately, there’s no real biblical basis for this statement. It stems from 1 Corinthians 10:13 which tells us how God is faithful to not let us be tempted beyond our ability. But the key here is that this verse is talking about temptations, not trials. If we look throughout Scripture, we will find countless examples of those who faced trials that they couldn’t handle on their own. The early Christians, for example, were heavily persecuted, even to the point of death.
God will often allow trials in our lives to show us our need for Him. In this way, we can expect to encounter trials that we can’t handle apart from Him.
- Trials produce spiritual growth.
And not only this, but we also exult in our tribulations, knowing that tribulation brings about perseverance; and perseverance, proven character; and proven character, hope; and hope does not disappoint, because the love of God has been poured out within our hearts through the Holy Spirit who was given to us. – Romans 5:3-5
- Trials grant us the opportunity to experience true joy and peace from the Lord that is beyond our understanding.
Consider it all joy, my brethren, when you encounter various trials, knowing that the testing of your faith produces endurance. And let endurance have its perfect result, so that you may be perfect and complete, lacking in nothing. – James 1:2-4
- Perseverance through difficult times always brings great reward and spiritual blessing.
Beloved, do not be surprised at the fiery ordeal among you, which comes upon you for your testing, as though some strange thing were happening to you; but to the degree that you share the sufferings of Christ, keep on rejoicing, so that also at the revelation of His glory you may rejoice with exultation. – 1 Peter 4:12-13
Blessed is a man who perseveres under trial; for once he has been approved, he will receive the crown of life which the Lord has promised to those who love Him. – James 1:12
Trials come in all shapes and sizes. Maybe you’re dealing with the loss of a loved one. Or perhaps a chronic illness is weighing you down. Or if you’re like me, simple day-to-day stress tries to steal my joy. In every trial, God is faithful to help us endure. He comforts and strengthens us as we grow in our faith.
Trials will come. The Bible says so. But the Bible also tells us that we can choose joy in the midst of these trials. We can view them through the lens of eternity, and we will always be victorious because Christ has already overcome the world.
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*Unless otherwise indicated, Scripture quotations taken from the NASB.
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