The Good In Trials, Afflictions And Temptations (11)
Remember, the past few weeks, we have discussed ways on how to handle trials and afflictions with scanty references on temptations. This was deliberately done so that at the end of the present series, we will discuss temptations on their own merit and demerits.
You will recall that in handling trials and afflictions we discovered that the seeker must cast all his cares on God (Jam. 1:6); never fear or be scared of mountainous problems and troubles (Mk. 11:23-24); persist and stand firm in what the Bible says (Dan. 10:10-13); maintain a violent attitude against the world of darkness (Mtt.11:12); do not forget his amour of warfare (Eph.6:10-18); rely on Gods promises always (Matt. 28:20); and realise that he needs wisdom in difficult times and circumstances to make the right choices or decisions.
This week we shall discuss the benefits or profits of trials and afflictions. The following are the gains of trials and afflictions.
Firstly, they teach us patience! Why do we need patience?
The more a tree is tossed about by fierce wind and storms the deeper its roots go down, that is what patience does to us as we pass through trials and afflictions. Patience is the ability ‘‘to stay, to abide, to stand fast,” under pressure of trials and afflictions instead of trying to escape from them in order to experience God’s desires for our lives.
Guess what! No one can run away from the pressures and demands of life. They are inevitable! Therefore we need a virtue called patience. Patience makes us fit, shaped and pliable for our purpose in the hand of God.
To be patient means, to remain alive, to be permanent under the constancy perseverance of pressure from the world no matter how long it lasts. So, the good news is that you are assured that you will breathe under the pressures and, that is what the world out there cannot guarantee us! Patience has to do with expecting and waiting for somebody or something under hope. Patience believes an insult is like mud, it will brush-off better when it is dry.
‘‘But also for this very reason, giving all diligence, add to your faith, virtue; to virtue, knowledge; to knowledge, self-control; to self-control, perseverance; to perseverance, godliness; to godliness, brotherly kindness; and to brotherly kindness, love. For if these things are yours and abound, you will be neither barren nor unfruitful in the knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ, for he who lacks these things is short sighted, even to blindness, and has forgotten that he was cleansed from his old sins. Therefore, brethren, be even more diligent to make your call and election sure, for if you do these things you will never stumble.’’ (2pet.1:5-10 (NKJV)
Patience produces perseverance and steadfastness and so whoever, will take the path of patience will always develop Christian virtues without sweat.
‘‘We give no offense in anything, that our ministry may not be blamed. But in all things we commend ourselves as ministers of God: in much patience, in tribulations, in needs, in distresses, in stripes, in imprisonments, in tumults, in labours, in sleeplessness, in fasting; by purity, by knowledge, by longsuffering, by kindness, by the Holy Spirit, by sincere love, by the word of truth, by the power of God, by the armour of righteousness on the right hand and on the left, by honour and dishonour, by evil report and good report; as deceivers, and yet true; as unknown, and yet well known; as dying, and behold we live; as chastened, and yet not killed; as sorrowful, yet always rejoicing; as poor, yet making many rich; as having nothing, and yet possessing all things.’’ (2Cor. 6:3-7)
‘‘And not only that, but we also glory in tribulations, knowing that tribulation produces perseverance and perseverance, character and character, hope. Now hope does not disappoint, because the love of God has been poured out in our hearts by the Holy Spirit who was given to us.’’ (Rom. 5:3-5 (NKJV)
The long pursuit of a dream is perseverance and steadfastness is the power of being firm or firmness in whatever a man does or believes. And the bedrock of both is patience. Since life’s great things happen over a long period of time, therefore we need patience to maximise their potentials.
When we try to hasten certain things to mature before their time, we become losers because God created them with a time tag on them before they grow and are processed to maturity. When we refuse to be patience, trials and afflictions come faster into our lives on personal invitations. Most trials, afflictions and even temptation may be avoided if we will develop the virtue called patience.
That we are living in the rocket, jet or computer age, does not mean that God will suddenly change his eternal word or principles that he created this world with, to suit and satisfy our impatience. When we insist on our way and become impatient, we may have what we want but certainly, they will never last or serve their purpose in our lives because, such will always be unripe blessings just as unripe fruits in the hands of an impatient farmer who refuses to wait for the fruits to mature until harvest time. Remember there is time for everything!
‘‘To everything there is a season, a time for every purpose under heaven.’’ (Eccl. 3:1 (NKJV)
Bishop S.J. Wakili Power
National President, Dominion Chapel, Int’l Churches, Kubwa