Developing your Character through Trials (I):
“But we all, with open face beholding as in a glass the glory of the Lord, are changed into the same image from glory to glory, even as by the Spirit of the Lord.” (2nd Corinthians 3:18, King James Version).
This is the key Bible verse for the “Come and See” devotional today.
The beginning of mankind started from dust as related in Genesis 2. The hands of the Almighty God crafted the first man, Adam, who was moulded from the raw earth until he became the exact image and likeness of God. As suggested by our key Bible verse for this message, the approach of God has not changed. He gradually moulds us until we become what He intended. The Bible reads: “but the path of the just is like the shining sun that shines ever brighter unto the perfect day.” (Proverbs 4:18, New King James Version).
However, our daily trials and challenges are ingredients in His Hands to perfect our character to achieve His purpose for our lives. Trials will come our way, but it is our response that matters. We read: “and not only that, but we also glory in tribulations, knowing that tribulation produces perseverance; and perseverance, character; and character, hope.” (Romans 5:3-4, New King James Version).
Our current approach and attitude determines to some extent the duration of our trials. Sometimes we ask God to change the situation instead of asking for the grace for us to change: the solution to most of our troubles lies in our own hands. This recalls the prolonged painful experience of the children of Israel in the wilderness after their deliverance from over four hundred years of bondage in the land of the Egyptians.
Because of their wrong attitude a journey that should have taken eleven days took forty years. In Deuteronomy 1:2 (American Standard Version) we learn that: “It is eleven days’ journey from Horeb by way of Mount Seir to Kadesh Barnea.” God did not wish for this long delay but their continuous murmurings led to rebellion and so the older generation did not get to the Promised Land. This was unfortunate as the challenges were meant to strengthen them and to make them trust God wholeheartedly.
Your character must change if your unfortunate circumstances are to change for the better. For example, the change of circumstances of the woman who was diseased with an ‘issue of blood’ for twelve years started from within (read Matthew 9:18-26). She changed her character to believe in God for her healing instead of trusting the physicians and her wealth: “for she said to herself, ‘If only I may touch His garment, I shall be made well.’” (Matthew 9:21, New King James Version).
A clay pot must pass through fire to be made into a useful vessel and in the same way, the trials of life are meant to remove all the negative issues preventing us from developing our characters positively and achieving excellence. The bible states : “Now your attitudes and thoughts must all be constantly changing for the better.” (Ephesians 4:23, Living Bible).
Let us pray: “Father, I receive grace and strength to recognise the change I need to make for my situation to change,” in Jesus’ Mighty Name. Amen.
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