I spent some time visiting with a person the other day who is over 90 years old. They were sharing about their life and all of the blessings they have received from God. They spoke of family, friends and faith. They even spoke about being blessed through difficult times. They shared how these times caused them to grow in their faith and in their empathy, love and appreciation for others who are struggling in the midst of difficult times. I was blessed by our conversation and appreciated the wisdom that was being shared. Counting difficult times as a blessing reminded me of the perspective about trials spoken of in 1 Peter 1:6 – 7:
1 Peter 1:6 In this you greatly rejoice, even though now for a little while, if necessary, you have been distressed by various trials, 7 so that the proof of your faith, being more precious than gold which is perishable, even though tested by fire, may be found to result in praise and glory and honor at the revelation of Jesus Christ;
It is true; our faith can grow during difficult times. Difficult times can teach us to depend on God and to walk closer with the Lord than we ever have before. Our faith can grow. We can even grow in our ability to show compassion and empathy to others when they are in the midst of difficult times. And certainly being kind, tenderhearted and compassionate toward others always results in praise and glory and honor to the Lord.