Imagine someone describing you like this: “They’re a pillar! They try to live rightly before God and others, and are free from excessive worry.”
Wouldn’t that be great! But hold on, let’s back up a minute.
There are times when hardship is discipline from God. I’m not saying that all hardship is discipline from our loving heavenly Father, but some of it certainly is. It’s for our good and so that we can share in his holiness (see Hebrews 12:10).
Verse 11 describes another benefit. “Later on… it produces a harvest of righteousness and peace for those who have been trained by it.”
The idea is this. Over the long haul—because of God’s loving discipline—you will show evidence of both righteousness and peace. In this context, “righteousness” is about living rightly before God and others, and “peace” is about being free from excessive worry.
Hardship is… well, hard. But what if you were being refined? What if God was preparing both your mind and heart to serve him in a new way, or to navigate something challenging and which will require more mental or spiritual muscle?
With that in mind, let me return to that description of the future you: “They’re a pillar! They try to live rightly before God and others, and are free from excessive worry.”
Yes, hardship is hard. But knowing who you’re becoming motivates you to push through what you’re enduring.
–The Up Devotional is published five days a week (Monday-Friday) and returns on December 6, 2021.
–Bible quotes are from the NIV.