Not Just Consolation

Just for the record, the goal of what God is forming on my worst days is not only consolation. It’s maturity, health and destiny. Consolation is stunningly wonderful, but it doesn’t free me into my tomorrows. I need to know that what God is allowing during my worst day is redemptive into greater purpose. I need to know I still have a future, God’s perfect and magnificent future. It’s what Paul shouts out in Romans five. Tribulation brings perseverance. That forms proven character, which inevitably, invariably gives me hope. Stunning hope. It’s not me proving my character to God. It’s God revealing the character he’s been working in me, to me!

Here’s how it might look: I find myself in an actual reality of pain, confusion, and stunned reversal of fortune. God doesn’t specially create such pain for a test. He just employs what already exists in a fallen world and uses it for my best. To reveal anything, it has to feel like much is on the line. So, tribulation, (i.e. ‘my worst days’) releases a chance to see myself weather it, to see that God can get me to the next season, fully intact. I find my greatest fears of what denial I thought I might do, didn’t happen. I find that while I don’t respond perfectly, Christ in me turns out to be enough. So much more than enough. The maturity he’s been building in me worked when I most needed it. This season of it being tested out is actually creating new maturity!
I’m still in the storm, but I want you to know, more and more each day, I am experiencing real and tested hope. I’m not sure I could have found it any other way.

John Lynch