Responding to trials · trials

Strengthened Through Trials

Whenever we step out to follow and serve the Lord, we can pretty much be sure that there will be a battle. It is allowed through the loving hands of a God Who knows we need it so that we will be strengthened for the work. You might ask,

“Strengthened by trials?” How?

It’s easy to think that trials only weaken us. In one sense they might, but when we are weak, what do we realize? That HE is strong!

I’ve been dealing with multiple difficulties in the last few weeks and my heart has felt so overwhelmed at times. I’ve preached truth to myself while tears streamed down my face. The trials made made me “pray without ceasing.” I Thessalonians 5:17 My weakness brought me to realize my need for God’s strength.

One morning I rose from my sleep, coffee and Bible in hand and seated myself in my “Quiet Place” to spend time with the Lord. My heart was heavy and I felt defeated. My chronological Bible reading plan found me in Daniel 10 on that morning. Reading prophecy wouldn’t have been my first choice on this day! How about a psalm of comfort? No, this is where I would read.

I prayed, asking God to enlighten His Word to my heart and teach me. As I got near the end of the chapter I read,

And said, O man greatly beloved, fear not: peace be unto thee, be strong, yea, be strong. And when he had spoken unto me, I was strengthened, and said, Let my lord speak; for thou hast strengthened me.

Wanting to carefully handle the Scripture and not take it out of context, I read the verse again. The Spirit of God whispered in my heart, “Denise, you are greatly beloved. Don’t be afraid. Appropriate my peace. Be strong in me.”

I know that verse wasn’t written for me. This was the angel speaking to Daniel about the vision he had seen. But I do know that the Author of the Word can take the Scripture and comfort us with it, and that is exactly what He did on that morning. It was as though the Lord had seated Himself beside me to tell me exactly what I needed to hear. Like Daniel, …

I rose from my quiet time with joy, not because the trial had magically disappeared, but because the Lord has strengthened me. His peace was overruling when the cacophony of strife wanted to settle over me. I repeated that verse to myself (and others!) again and again.

Without those trials I wouldn’t be able to look back on that sweet, sweet time with the Lord that early morning. I would have continued in my own strength, rather than appropriating His. I would’n’t have this testimony to share even now. So, I say, Thank you, Lord for the hardships that you allowed! Thank you for your strength that was made perfect in my weakness.

If you’re in a trial right now, be still and allow the Lord to speak to your heart in the stillness. Open His Word and read with a tender, receptive heart. He will do as this verse says, In the day when I cried thou answeredst me, and strengthenedst me with strength in my soul. Psalm 138:3

He will refresh you even in trials,

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