Quote: To live such a life, (as an effective Christian), to exert such an influence, costs at every step, effort, self-sacrifice, and discipline. It is because they do not understand this that many are so easily discouraged in the Christian life. Many who sincerely consecrate their lives to God’s service are surprised and disappointed to find themselves, as never before, confronted by obstacles and beset by trials and perplexities. They pray for Christ-likeness of character, for a fitness for the Lord’s work, and they are placed in circumstances that seem to call forth all the evil of their old nature. Faults are revealed, of which they did not suspect the existence. Like Israel of old, they question, “If God is leading us why do all these things come upon us?”
It is because God is leading them that these things come upon them. Trials and obstacles are the Lord’s chosen methods of discipline and His appointed conditions of success…in His providence He brings these persons into different positions and varied circumstances that may discover character defects which have been concealed from their own knowledge. He gives them opportunity to correct these defects, and to fit themselves for His service.
Except for crisis and trial in the life, defects in character may never be exposed and so may never be corrected. A comfortable life therefore is not something for which we ought to necessarily either pray for nor seek. Hence Christ’s words; “seek ye first the kingdom of God and His righteousness, and all these things shall be added (food, clothing, housing, work etc) unto you.” (Matthew 6:33.)
Quote: We do not always consider that the sanctification we so earnestly desire and for which we pray is brought about through the truth and by the providence of God, in a manner we least expect. When we look for joy, behold, there is sorrow. When we expect peace, we frequently have distrust and doubt, because we find ourselves plunged into trials we cannot avoid. In these trials we are having the answers to our prayers. In order for us to be purified, the fire of affliction must kindle upon us, and our will must be brought into conformity to the will of God….God sees it best to put us under a course of discipline which is essential for us before we are fit subjects for the blessing we crave….perfection of character can be attained only through labour, conflict, and self-denial….He brings us into positions which are most trying to reveal what is in our hearts. The further the development of Christian graces He will place us in circumstances which will demand increased exertion on our part to keep our faith in lively exercise….
…All who in this world would render service to God or man receive a preparatory training in the school of sorrow. The weightier the trust and the higher the service, the closer is the test and the more severe the discipline….
…Those who are finally victorious will have seasons of terrible perplexity and trial in their religious life; but they must not cast away their confidence, for this is a part of their discipline in the school of Christ and it is essential in order that all dross may be purged away.
To him that overcometh will I give to eat of the tree of life, which is in the midst of the paradise of God.
To him that overcometh will I give to eat of the hidden manna, and will give him a white stone, and in the stone a new name written, which no man knoweth saving he that receiveth it.
To him that overcometh and keepeth my works unto the end, to him will I give power over the nations:
To him that overcometh will I grant to sit with me in my throne, even as I also overcame, and am set down with my Father in his throne
Quote: In times of trial, we must cling to God and His promises. Some have said to me,”Do you not get discouraged at times when you are under trial?” And I have answered,” Yes, if by discouragement you mean sad or cast down.” “Didn’t you talk to anyone of your feelings?” “No, there is a time for silence, a time to keep the tongue as with a bridle, and I was determined to utter no word of doubt or darkness, to bring no shade of gloom upon those with whom I associated. I have said to myself, I will bear the refiners fire; I shall not be consumed. When I speak, it shall be of light; it shall be of faith and hope in God; it shall be of righteousness, of goodness, of the love of Christ my Saviour; it shall be to direct the minds of others toward heaven and heavenly things, to Christ’s work in heaven for us, and our work upon earth for Him.
Quote: All our sufferings and sorrows, all our temptations and trials, all our sadness and griefs, all our persecutions and privations, in short, all things work together for good. All experiences and circumstances are God’s workmen whereby good is brought to us.
Ephesians 4:31 Let all bitterness, and wrath, and anger, and clamour, and evil speaking, be put away from you, with all malice:
Folks, let us bear our trials with joy and confidence knowing that all things work together for good to them that love God and who are called according to His purpose. And let us not moan and groan under their weight that we may not be a discouragement to others. Rather, let us each one uplift the God of our salvation, leading others to the cross of Christ without laying stumbling stones in the way of searching souls.
PS. All quotes from EG White.
- Why is This Happening? (gospelbondservant.com)
- The Discipline of Grace (Chapter 1.2) (maochamna.wordpress.com)
- The Faith Struggle (gospelbondservant.com)