The story is told of two artists who were putting the finishing touches on a painting high up on a scaffold in a church. The younger artist stepped back to admire their work and became enraptured with the beauty of what they had created. His master saw the young man’s excitement and realized that in the emotion of the moment he was stepping back toward the edge of the scaffold. Just one more step and he would plunge to his death. Afraid that he would frighten his student by a warning cry the master deliberately splashed paint across the painting. The young artist lunged forward in shock shouting, “What have you done? Why did you do that?” Upon hearing the reason, his anger melted into tears of thanksgiving.
Sometimes God uses trials to get our attention to protect us from ourselves, especially from our naïve enthusiasm that could lead to disaster. We need to have a different perspective about trials. Instead of seeing them as bad we must look at them as something that could possibly be for our benefit.
When God wants to drill a man, and thrill a man, and skill a man, when God wants to mold a man to play the noblest part, when He yearns with all His heart to create so great and bold a man that all the world shall be amazed, watch His method, watch His ways, how He ruthlessly perfects whom He royally elects. Watch how He hammers him and hurts him and with mighty blows converts him into trial shapes of clay which only God understands, while his tortured heart is crying and he lifts heavy hands. How He bends but never breaks when His good He undertakes. How He uses whom He chooses and with every purpose fuses.
God knows what His man is all about. The trials of our faith are like God’s ironing. When the heat of a trial is applied to our lives the wrinkles of spiritual immaturity begin to smooth out. A big lesson I have learned is: it is great to attend church and Bible study, to sit and soak up the truth of God’s word like a sponge. But, a sponge works best after it is squeezed out.
Wilson Johnson, founder of Holiday Inn said, “When I was forty years old I worked in a sawmill. One morning the boss told me I was fired. Discouraged and depressed, I felt like my world had caved in. When I told my wife what had happened, she asked me what I was going to do. I replied, ‘I’m going to mortgage our little home and go into the building business.’ My first venture was the construction of two small buildings. Within five years I was a multimillionaire! At the time it happened I didn’t understand why I was fired. But later I saw that it was God’s unerring and wondrous plan to get me into the way of His choosing.”
I love stories like this, but who likes going through them? But they are necessary. To find gold, more dirt will be moved than gold, but when a nugget is found it has been worth it all. The testing of your faith may be painful, but that’s okay; the end result is golden. For more info you can visit us at www.JoyChristianMinistries.com
Pastor J.C. Myers, III
Pastor J.C. founded Joy Christian Ministries in 1992. He was Sr. Pastor at Joy Christian Ministries in West Sacramento, California from 1992-2016. He was succeeded by his 2nd son, Pastor Brandon Myers who had been under his father's ministry and teaching for 39 years.