The Necessity of Trials

We all know how caterpillars turn into butterflies.  They weave their chrysalis (cocoons are for moths) and a few weeks later, that chrysalis breaks open, and a butterfly pushes out through the opening and takes flight.  One thing that most people don’t know is that the pushing out of that chrysalis is an important step in the process.  Not because the butterfly wouldn’t get out (of course it wouldn’t!) but because the butterfly’s body, while inside that chrysalis, is swollen with liquid and its wings are shriveled up.  Pushing out of the tiny break causes that liquid to drain out of the butterfly’s body and fill up those wings so they are strong enough to fly.

This isn’t unlike the trials that we encounter in our Christian walk.  In James 1:2-4, James writes

2 Consider it all joy, my brethren, when you encounter various trials, 3 knowing that the testing of your faith produces endurance. 4 And let endurance have its perfect result, so that you may be perfect and complete, lacking in nothing.

It’s through the trials that we undergo in life that cause us to refine and temper our faith, which leads us closer to perfection.  Paul, writing in 2 Corinthians 12:10, echoes James’ words by writing

10 Therefore I am well content with weaknesses, with insults, with distresses, with persecutions, with difficulties, for Christ’s sake; for when I am weak, then I am strong.

We may feel weak when we face off against Satan, but it’s then that we have the wonderful opportunity to “tag out” and let Jesus wrestle with Satan for us.  The next time life starts to get a little bumpy, and things just aren’t going your way, instead of getting down about it, look at it as God saying, “It’s time to grow.”  Those times are never pleasant, but it’s these moments where your faith can stretch bigger than it’s ever been before.

And always keep in mind what Paul writes in Romans 8:18 –

18 For I consider that the sufferings of this present time are not worthy to be compared with the glory that is to be revealed to us.

In the end, it will all be worth it.  You’ll be standing in the presence of Jesus our Lord and praising God with all the saints.  Amen.