– James 1:12
Testing our Faith
God pronounces a blessing on those who persevere under trials because after “he has stood the test” that person “will receive the crown of life.” Isn’t that a good enough reason to have trials? Trials are certainly no fun but they produce godly fruit. We have a rose bush that for years didn’t produce many, if any, roses, so I trimmed it back one fall, and even thought it appeared that I was going to kill it, the rose bush flourished the next year because of the pruning. God may prune us in order that we will produce more fruit.
Strengthening our Faith
Even in nature, trees that are pruned end up stronger because of the dead limbs are no longer putting a strain on the tree. These useless branches are removed so that newer, healthier branches may appear. In other words, trials can strengthen our faith, even though at times it may appear they’re going to kill us, so take heart; God disciplines every child of His because He loves us (Heb 12:5-6). Where there is discipline, there is love.
Refining our Faith
ou may not feel like rejoicing during a trail but the Apostle Peter wrote, “In this you rejoice, though now for a little while, if necessary, you have been grieved by various trials” (1st Pet 1:6) so “do not be surprised at the fiery trial when it comes upon you to test you, as though something strange were happening to you” (1st Pet 4:12). God is refining your faith so that we will know how strong or weak our faith is, not that He would learn but that we would. Think about this; gold that is refined is more valuable, just as your faith is after it’s been tested by fire.
Secure in our Faith
When we are going through trials, God may be telling us to examine ourselves and our lives before Him. If we are doing things that are contrary to His will, He might allow us to pass through a storm so that we might cast off everything that’s not really important. Trials make us prioritize our life and help us make an assessment of things. If that happens, we can be more secure in our faith because we know that God disciplines every child He loves.
There are certainly more than four reasons why God allows us to pass through trials, but we know that a faith that’s never been tested is a faith that can’t be trusted; He may prune us and refine us in order to secure us and be used for His glory, and really, does anything matter besides His glory?