One reason we don’t embrace hardship is that we don’t understand its purpose. The Bible teaches that we don’t have to love hardship; we just need to endure. I am not aware of a single person who takes pleasure in adversity, complexities, or trouble that never seems to end. However, when we understand the purpose behind these adversities, it becomes easier to endure.
My experiences have taught me that hardship builds and tests your character. It reveals who you really are. Look at the life of Joseph; he experienced one adversity after another until he came to his destiny. Every negative experience tested his character. The Psalmist says this about Joseph: “Until the time came to fulfill his dreams, the Lord tested Joseph’s character.” Psalm 105:19 (NLT)
The text said, “The Lord tested Joseph.” Not that God personally tested Joseph, but God allowed the testing. Remember, your enemy cannot touch you unless God allows him (Job 1). The Hebrew word for test is “tsaraph,” meaning to smelt as in smelting ore or to refine as in refining gold. To smelt, refine, or test something is to put it through a process.
The process is going to stress, beat, liquefy, reshape, and purify the material until it becomes useful. The process does not alter the composition of the material; instead, it makes it valuable.
Beloved, if you are in the process, focus on your purpose, not the process. I know it’s not easy. You may have been in the process for a long time; however, you have got to stay in the process because you are closer than you think. I declare that you will come out of the process stronger! Your character will be stronger, your commitment will be more significant, and your love for God will be unquestionable.
One final word from the Psalmist, “If you fall to pieces in a crisis, there wasn’t much to you in the first place” Proverbs 24:10 (MSG). Let it not be said that there was not much to you.
My dear children, stand faithful in your hardship, knowing that The Lord is with you. When it’s over, you will come out as pure gold!
Your Spiritual Father