“Life isn’t about waiting for the storm to pass … it’s about learning to dance in the rain.”
Well a few weeks ago, I posted this quote on my facebook page and was surprised by how many people liked it, identified with it or were blessed by it. I think the reason for that is the fact that storms are universal. We all go through storms ALL THE TIME, and we can often find ourselves in that place of waiting for them to pass. But the Bible tells us that the storms, or the trials, have a purpose. James declared:
“ My brethren, count it all joy when you fall into various trials, knowing that the testing of your faith produces patience. But let patience have its perfect work, that you may be perfect and complete, lacking nothing.” – James 1:2-4
The Apostle Peter said a similar thing in his epistle:
“In this you greatly rejoice, though now for a little while, if need be, you have been grieved by various trials, that the genuineness of your faith, being much more precious than gold that perishes, though it is tested by fire, may be found to praise, honor, and glory at the revelation of Jesus Christ.” – 1 Peter 1:6-7
Both James and Peter remind us that trials produce something in us! They can be instruments or tools to make us more like Jesus! But trials also create a unique atmosphere for experiencing the presence of God in a very real and tangible way. Consider the words of the Psalmist:
“God is our refuge and strength, a very present help in trouble. Therefore we will not fear, though the earth should change and though the mountains slip into the heart of the sea; though its waters roar and foam, though the mountains quake at its swelling pride… The LORD of hosts is with us; the God of Jacob is our stronghold.” – Psalm 46:1-3,7
Did you catch that? “God is our refuge and strength, a very present help in trouble.” Sometimes it is in the trial that we sense his presence the most. Recently my wife and I had friends who lost their 25 year old son in an auto accident. Our hearts broke for them, we cried at their loss. But God met them in that storm in an incredible way. His presence was so strong and His grace was so sufficient that in the midst of this tragedy they were rejoicing because they kept seeing God’s hand in the circumstances that followed. The mom actually shared at her sons memorial service telling all his friends they needed to follow Jesus! It was amazing and probably one of the most vivid displays of God’s grace being sufficient in weakness that I have ever witnessed. Isaiah the prophet also spoke of the nearness of God in the midst of our trials we he declared.
“Do not fear, for I am with you; do not anxiously look about you, for I am your God. I will strengthen you, surely I will help you, surely I will uphold you with My righteous right hand.” – Isaiah 41:10
So we can rejoice in the trials because:
- They make us more like Jesus.
- They create a unique experience for experiencing the presence of God.
- God is near to the broken hearted. Psalm 34:18 / Psalm 51:17
- The storm provides the opportunity for God to show Himself as our stronghold. Nahum 1:7 Amplified
- They are working out God’s good and perfect plan. Romans 8:28