Rom. 5:3-4 We can rejoice, too, when we run into problems and trials, for we know that they are good for us--they help us to learn to endure. And endurance develops strength of character in us, and character strengthens our confident expectation of salvation.
Wait a minute! When was the last time you rejoiced because you were having problems and trials? If you are like most people, probably never. Instead, we tend to complain about them and feel sorry for ourselves because of them. We often will do everything we can to avoid problems and trials, even though we know they come, usually unexpectedly.
The Apostle Paul really suggests something radical here in today's verses. He says that we can REJOICE when troubles and trials come. Rejoice?!! Yes, rejoice. How is that even possible? Well, we need to look beyond the moment and at the bigger picture of our lives. We need to ask ourselves what we might learn from our troubles. If they were caused by something we said or did, then we can learn not to do it again. If they happened because of something out of our control, then we can learn to deal with them in a manner that would honor Christ and strengthen our faith.
Some of us are slow learners, but if we are looking to get better at all, we do learn. One of life's most important lessons is to learn from our experiences. We learn to endure what we are going through, knowing that better times are ahead of us. No matter what it is, it doesn't last forever and we are better for having gone through it. Endurance helps us build strong character and strong character helps us to know that the most important thing in our lives is our salvation, that the moment will pass away but our salvation will last forever.
The next time you face problems or trials, think about these things. Lean on the Lord for your wisdom and strength. He will see you through the moment and your faith will grow as a result of it. There is much good through the tough times of life, if we will but have eyes to see it. Rejoice, for the Lord is with you and will see you through to the other side of all your trials and tribulations.