If God was to deliver us from hardships as fast as we would like, it would be like taking a weightlifter out of the gym and expecting him to look all bulked up- so in times of hardship, strain and challenge as believers in Christ we can look at it a different way because we know God is training our spiritual and character muscles to become stronger and better conditioned! Troubles come on everyone and sometimes life is so hard that some despair and end it as a result! And the Christ follower is not immune to hardship either and in someways standing for Christ will mean in a sense, greater opposition, yet there is joy! There is a joy in becoming a blessing to those who are suffering because of our hope! There is a joy in knowing God is in control and loves us and saved us, so we can inherit his promises, favor and eternal life after! There is a joy in knowing that no matter how dark things seem, the same God who allowed hardship is good and can once again bring us into the light of day again, after we have learned what we needed to in the shadows of night! There is the joy in knowing that through his light burning in your and my heart in the darkest places, many may also see and too turn to Him! There is a joy that hardships can be the materials he uses to make us better blessings and more able to be useful instruments of healing, and our hearts can hold more love after he has shaped us on the wheel of adversity! Who has ever been a great and compassionate person who has been spoiled in luxery and never suffered pain, loss, heartache or sorrow? Who has ever been a strong shoulder to lean except someone who knows the strain? To lean on the spiritually obese that have been fattened with life’s cakes and candies only shows to topple them over also!
The joy of knowing that He is with us in these times of sorrow and grief and hardness and lack, he is able to be sweet to the soul and strength to the heart!
Humble yourselves therefore under the mighty hand of God, so that he may exalt you in due time. Cast all your anxiety on him, because he cares for you. Discipline yourselves, keep alert. Like a roaring lion your adversary the devil prowls around, looking for someone to devour. Resist him, steadfast in your faith, for you know that your brothers and sisters in all the world are undergoing the same kinds of suffering. And after you have suffered for a little while, the God of all grace, who has called you to his eternal glory in Christ, will himself restore, support, strengthen, and establish you. To him be the power forever and ever. Amen.
1 Peter 5:6-11