Persevering in Difficult Times
Learning through the refining fire
by Joanne Troppello
“Patience and perseverance have a magical effect before which difficulties disappear and obstacles vanish.” – John Quincy Adams
Sometimes I feel like all I’m doing is trying to make it through another day. When you’ve been dealing with struggles for a while—without any break on the horizon—it can seem like you’re never going to get to the light at the end of the tunnel.
Lessons learned through fiery trials
However, I have learned some important things through the fiery trials in my life.
1. God’s constant presence
God is always with me. I can feel His presence and guiding hand through every up and down.
Let your conduct be without covetousness; be content with such things as you have. For He Himself has said, “I will never leave you nor forsake you.” (Hebrews 13:5, NKJV)
I love knowing that God won’t ever leave me. His constant presence is like a warm embrace.
2. God my comforter
No matter what I am going through, God is always with me. He has given His Holy Spirit as my comfort and guide.
But the Helper, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in My name, He will teach you all things, and bring to your remembrance all things that I said to you. (John 14:26, NKJV)
It is comforting to know that the Holy Spirit is always with me and reminding me of God’s Word and His promises to me. I am also comforted to know that He shows me when I am sinning and need to turn back to His ways.
3. Life won’t be easy
God never promised us that life would be easy. Once sin came into the world, there was no more perfect communion with God in the Garden of Eden for Adam and Eve. Their life would—from the moment they partook of the forbidden fruit and onward—be difficult.
Our lives are no different. However, God sent His Son, Jesus to die for us and give us the gift of eternal salvation if we accept Him as our Lord and Savior.
“These things I have spoken to you, that in Me you may have peace. In the world you will have tribulation; but be of good cheer, I have overcome the world.” (John 16:33, NKJV)
4. My real home is in heaven
My real home is in heaven. I am only passing through this life. I saw this quote from Marie Curie that really resonated with me.
“Life is not easy for any of us. But what of that? We must have perseverance and above all confidence in ourselves. We must believe that we are gifted for something and that this thing must be attained.”
The older I get and longer I develop my relationship with the Lord—as of today, it’s been 31 years (I got saved at a young age)—the more I realize that my real home is in heaven.
For our citizenship is in heaven, from which we also eagerly wait for the Savior, the Lord Jesus Christ, who will transform our lowly body that it may be conformed to His glorious body, according to the working by which He is able even to subdue all things to Himself. (Phil. 3:20-21, NKJV)
I am only passing through this life. It’s not meant to be all roses down here. As a Christian, my responsibilities should be to live a life devoted to the Lord and bringing His gospel message to other people.
Sure, I can strive for things. My husband and I still believe for dreams that God’s put on our hearts to come to pass on this earth. However, I shouldn’t be surprised when I face struggles.
Beloved, do not think it strange concerning the fiery trial which is to try you, as though some strange thing happened to you, but rejoice to the extent that you partake of Christ’s sufferings, that when His glory is revealed, you may also be glad with exceeding joy. (I Peter 4:12-13, NKJV)
5. Live one day at a time
All I can do is to live one day at a time. Sure, I should plan for the future, but I don’t know how many days I still have on the earth. I want to make each one count for the Lord.
Have you been overwhelmed by struggles in this life?
I can speak from personal experience that if you give your burdens over to the Lord, He can give you the strength and peace to endure these trials.
Your next mountaintop experience could be closer than you think. Just take each day one step at a time.
Previously published on Medium.
About the Author
Joanne Troppello is an author, writer, and poet. She is the publisher of the online Christian lifestyle magazine, Mustard Seed Sentinel.