“Consider it a sheer gift, friends, when tests and challenges come at you from all sides. You know that under pressure, your faith-life is forced into the open and shows its true colors. So don’t try to get out of anything prematurely. Let it do its work so you become mature and well-developed, not deficient in any way” (James 1:2–4 MSG).
So you think you’ve got problems? Consider Brian Hise:
He had more than his share of bad luck a few years ago in July. When his apartment in Provo, Utah, became flooded from a broken pipe in the apartment above his, the manager told him to go out and rent a wet/dry vacuum.
That’s when Brian discovered that his car had a flat tire. He changed the tire and went inside again to phone a friend for help. But the electric shock he got from the phone so startled him that he inadvertently ripped the instrument off the wall! Before he could leave his apartment a second time, a neighbor had to kick his door down because by now water damage had jammed it too tight to open.
While all this was going on, someone stole Brian’s car! But since it was almost out of gas, Brian found it just a few blocks away. He then had to push it to a gas station where he filled up the tank.
That evening Brian attended a military ceremony at the university he was attending. He injured himself severely when he somehow sat on his bayonet, which had been tossed in the front seat of his car!
Doctors were able to stitch up Brian’s wound but, in the meantime, no one was able to resuscitate four of his canaries who were crushed to death from the wet, falling plaster in his apartment. He discovered their deaths after arriving home and then slipping on the wet carpet in his apartment, badly injuring his tailbone.
Brian said he began to wonder if (and I quote), “God wanted me dead, but just kept missing!”
The Bible says, “Is your life full of difficulties and temptations? Then be happy, for when the way is rough, your patience has a chance to grow. So let it grow, and don’t try to squirm out of your problems. For when your patience is finally in full bloom, then you will be ready for anything, strong in character, full and complete” (James 1:2–4 LB).