Are trials literally hitting every area of your life?
Often when we suffer, it’s the life of our self-nature that causes us pain. When we are dead, we don’t suffer. If we were completely dead to our old nature we would no longer feel many of the pains that bother us . . .
God prepares a cross for us that must be embraced without thought of self-preservation. The cross is painful . . . The hardest thing about suffering is not knowing how great it will be or how long it will last. So often we want to set limits on our suffering.
We can’t reject the full work of the cross within us. If we do, we are forced to go over the same ground again and again. Worse yet, we will suffer much, but the suffering be for no purpose.
Lord help me never fall into the state in which the cross is not at work within me!
God most often doesn’t transform us on a bed of light, life, and grace. His transformation is usually done on the cross in darkness, poverty, and death. He uses disappointments and failures of our life to take our trust away from self and help us put our trust in Him. It is like being burned in a slow fire. Wouldn’t we rather be burned up in a blaze of glory? Aw but a fast burn wouldn’t detach us from ourselves and others.
We must endure the painful process. There is much more at work here than instant maturity. Through the process we will die to self and through relying on Christ and not-self we gain immeasurable faith, love, and trust in Him.
Paraphrased excerpts from the book, 100 Days in the Secret Place-Gene Edwards.
He’s the only answer we need in middle of the trial. We MUST have alone time with Him everyday- no matter what. Forget the pile of dishes, weeds in the garden, social media or watching a movie. Lets run to Him and sit in His presence. That’s where I’m headed right now! Lord, I don’t want to have to keep going through the same trial because I wouldn’t surrender all!
“But we have this treasure in earthen vessels, that the excellence of the power may be of God and not of us. We are hard pressed on every side, yet not crushed; we are perplexed, but not in despair; persecuted, but not forsaken; struck down, but not destroyed– always carrying about in the body the dying of the Lord Jesus, that the life of Jesus also may be manifested in our body. For we who live are always delivered to death for Jesus’ sake, that the life of Jesus also may be manifested in our mortal flesh. So then death is working in us, but life in you . . . Therefore do not lose heart. even though our outward man is perishing, yet the inward man is being renewed day by day. for our light afflictions, which is but for a moment, is working for us a far more exceeding and eternal wight of eternal glory, while we do not look at the things which are seen, but at the things which are not seen. For the things which are seen are temporary, but the things which are not seen are eternal.”II Corinthians 4: 7-18