September 8, 2019

When Struggle Leads to Beauty



Images courtesy of publicdomainpictures.net

“My brethren, count it all joy when ye fall into divers temptations; Knowing this, that the trying of your faith worketh patience. But let patience have her perfect work, that ye may be perfect and entire, wanting nothing.”-- James 1:2-4 (KJV)


Patience (replaced with “perseverance” in some editions of the Bible) is a difficult concept. Drivers don’t like to be delayed. That can lead to road rage. One click of a button can order us almost anything. We don’t even have to move from our seat.

Is this healthy? Does an easy, even lazy, life prepare us for future challenges? Uh, no. Absolutely not. It can lead us to become addicted to comfort.

An easy life moves nobody forward.

Choices and consequences have molded each of us into who we are today. Each person goes through challenging times that can also smooth over their rough edges. Please enjoy the examples below:


“Sometimes He Lets It Rain” (lyrics taken from shelsi-eric.blogspot.com)

She sees the storm clouds gather
The sky is turning cold and gray
She knows that something's coming
When she starts to feel this way
She pleads for intervention
But heaven offers no relief
And she would understand if she could only see that

Sometimes He lets it rain
He lets the fierce winds blow
Sometimes it takes a storm
To lead a heart where it can grow
He can move mountains of grief
And oceans of pain
But sometimes he lets it rain

When her heart surrenders
To the Master in control
Her spirit learns the lessons of the tempest in her soul
When it's no longer raging
She can see how far she's come
Through the wisdom and the mercy of the Son

Sometimes He lets it rain
He lets the fierce winds blow
Sometimes it takes a storm
To lead a heart where it can grow
He can move mountains of grief
And oceans of pain
But sometimes he lets it rain

(Tyler Castleton/ Staci Peters)
Vocal: Kathryn Nelson
Also found on the 2002 Stephanie Hill album, Promise

Venus Flytrap

All living organisms have a need for struggle and growth. Motivational speaker John Bytheway speaks here about these carnivorous plants:
  • True sunlight
  • Pure water
  • Adversity (This plant needs to be put outside during cold weather. If a person tries to protect it from the cold and keeps it inside, the Venus Flytrap will die. Winter strengthens it. The plant appears to be dead on top, but the root system is still alive and offering protection. The rest of the plant comes back to life at the end of the cold season.)

Caterpillar/butterfly

This is one of the most familiar changes in the animal kingdom. The struggle involved in the process may be less well known. Emerging butterflies need to struggle to get out of the cocoon, or they won’t have the strength to fly.  Their bodies remain swollen with fluid, and their wings don’t have the necessary power. Please see a sweet story on the subject entitled, “Struggle is good! I want to fly!” here:

My Conclusion

“And if children, then heirs; heirs of God, and joint-heirs with Christ; if so be that we suffer with him, that we may be also glorified together. For I reckon that the sufferings of this present time are not worthy to be compared with the glory which shall be revealed in us.”-- .”-- Romans 8:17-18 (KJV)
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“Blessed is the man that endureth temptation: for when he is tried, he shall receive the crown of life, which the Lord hath promised to them that love him.”-- James 1:12 (KJV)


Do you want to fly? If so, how hard are you willing to work?

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