Life is an interesting journey. There are times that our lives run smoothly, without obstacles. For some, there might be challenges and hardships that comes their way. This situations are not avoidable. But how do we react or response to these barriers?
When I am face with the hurdles of life, there are few Bible characters that comes to mind. One of which is Joseph the Dreamer. In his story in the book of Genesis (Ch. 37, 39-41), he was the favorite son of his father, Jacob (Israel), but that did not mean he had an easy life. Because of his father favoring him, his 11 brothers got jealous and hated him. Which caused them to plot evil things, like killing him. Simeon, his eldest brother, saved him from this fate, but he was sold to the Ishmaelites to become slave instead. Where he became a servant of Potiphar.
The next challenge Joseph faced was with his master’s wife, consistently seducing him and eventually accused him of lying with her which never occurred. Joseph was placed in prison and had to face another test with the Egyptian society. This was the third instance wherein Joseph did interpret dreams. One is for the Pharaoh’s cup bearer and the other with his chief baker. After interpreting their dreams, the cup bearer promised Joseph that he will help him, but forgot about Joseph when he was released from prison. The last test of Joseph was to interpret the dream of Pharaoh. After this interpretation Joseph was held as the second highest leader after Pharaoh.
James 1:2-3 KJV "2 My brethren, count it all joy when ye fall into divers temptations; 3 Knowing this, that the trying of your faith worketh patience."
Why Joseph’s story comes to mind when I faced hardships? Because when I was reading about his life, he never had a single complaint on the unfair circumstances he faced. He continued to serve God, was patient and people around him saw that God is with him no matter where and what he was doing. We can be like Joseph in our daily lives. Facing every day’s challenges with more faith in God than fear of the uncertainty.
We have to remind each other to rejoice when trials and temptations comes our way. Encouraging and helping each others as brothers and sisters in Christ. Putting in mind that these tests are to try our faith that eventually will bear fruits like patience and stronger faith in Christ. In relation to other scriptures that goes hand in hand with what James mentioned in his book, can be found in 1 Corinthians 10:13. When Paul writes that “There has no temptation taken but such as is common to man: but God is faithful, who will not suffer you to be tempted above that ye are able; but will with the temptation also make a way to escape, that ye may be able to bear it”.
Another verse that we can look into is John 15:2 “Every branch in me that beareth not fruit he taketh away: and every branch that beareth fruit, he purgeth it, that it may bring forth more fruit”. Always be glad when hardship comes our way. Because, first, we know God is at work in our life. Second, we known God does not give us more than what we can handle. Third, we know He is there to help us. Fourth, we will harvest patience and strong faith as a result of these trials. Lastly, we become more faithful and our relationship with God, through Christ, will be stronger. And I am sure of it because God said it through His words in the Scriptures.
This is the time for your journaling. Reflect on these questions. Ask the Holy Spirit to test your faith and your walk with Christ.
Examine yourselves, whether ye be in the faith; prove your own selves. Know ye not your own selves, how that Jesus Christ is in you, except ye be reprobates? — 2 Corinthians 13:5 KJV
- Have you faced any recent or past circumstances that was really hard for you?
- How do you react to tribulations in your life?
- Do you have faith on God’s word?
- Are you clinging more to God during adversities or moving far from Him?
- Have you shared your experiences to others?
- And did it help them face their trials?
Oh Lord, our Heavenly Father, we thanks You for never leaving our side. We know Lord, that You are always there for us when we call on You. Help us surrender our life to You. Use us in accordance to Your will to serve You and make You known to others. May our trials and challenges a stepping stone to be more closer to You and that others may see Your works in our lives. Thank You for the Holy Spirit who guides us in our every day life.
All these we ask in Jesus Name. Amen.