I’ve been in the middle of a business-related “learning experience” that I haven’t had to endure quite to this degree ever in the past. It’s been a kind of draining, energy-sapping thing and there’s not been a lot of time or stamina within me to put forth a lot of analysis about it, spiritually speaking; I’ve just been pretty much intent on simply surviving it. Now however, as it continues to drag on and on, and it seems completely out of my control to do much of anything to impact it, I’m attempting to pause and try to see it through the eyes of Jesus. This isn’t often fun, to be honest; in fact, it’s downright humbling and causes me to be still, to seek God.
A man does a fine thing when he endures pain, with a clear conscience towards God, though he knows he is suffering unjustly. After all, it is no credit to you if you are patient in bearing a punishment which you have richly deserved! But if you do your duty and are punished for it and can still accept it patiently, you are doing something worthwhile in God’s sight. Yes, this is your calling. For Christ suffered for you and left you a personal example, so that you might follow in his footsteps. He was guilty of no sin… Yet when he was insulted he offered no insult in return. When he suffered he made no threats of revenge. He simply committed his cause to the One who judges fairly. –1 Pet 2:19-23
“Oh dear…why doesn’t this ever get easier, Lord?”
I’m banging my head over here against the nearest wall, or maybe just leaning against it, hoping to hang on to what’s left of my sense of humor (at the very least).
I don’t do well with offering no insult in return! I’m not good at making no threat of revenge! Especially when it hits me right where I live, in ye old pocketbook or threatens my pride.
This means tremendous joy to you, even though at present you may be temporarily harassed by all kinds of trials. This is no accident–it happens to prove your faith, which is infinitely more valuable than gold, and gold, as you know, even though it is ultimately perishable, must be purified by fire. –1 Peter 1:6-7
When all kinds of trials and temptations crowd into your lives, don’t resent them as intruders, but welcome them as friends! Realize that they come to test your faith and to produce in you the quality of endurance.–James 1:2-4
So God wants me to be patient and offer no insult in return. Don’t throw mud for mud, repay evil for evil, or fret and worry about what’s to come next.
In other words, I’m to accept this terribly degrading matter and welcome it as a friend; it’s purifying me for Christ, and making me more like Jesus.
Where am I lacking now, oh God? Show me the way to please You through this difficulty.
Ahh, that’s it, there’s the key!
Rejoice in hope, be patient in tribulation, be constant in prayer. –Romans 12:12
Behold, as your life was precious this day in my sight, so may my life be precious in the sight of the LORD, and may he deliver me out of all tribulation.”–1 Samuel 26:2
Become as a child. Pure of heart, full of joy, and trust.
At that time the disciples came to Jesus and said, “Who then is greatest in the kingdom of heaven?”
And He called a child to Himself and set him before them,and said, “Truly I say to you, unless you are converted and become like children, you will not enter the kingdom of heaven.… — Matthew 18: 1-3
Helpful sources for this posting: