The Christian's View of Trial

by Stan Mitchell
He was a young man and already preaching. Every Sunday he would leave the Kansas farm his father worked, cross a train track, and drive to a rural church to preach.
One Sunday afternoon the train came half an hour early. He probably never knew what hit him.
How can we make sense of that? How could a God who is good allow such a promising life to be swept away? Simple answers only mock those who ask them. We cannot fathom completely the purposes of God.
But I can tell you the rest of the story. The broken-hearted father, who had been something of a “Sunday morning only” Christian, became an elder and a fine Bible-class teacher. The young man’s six younger brothers became Gospel preachers. One went to Zambia as a missionary; another to Buenos Aires, Argentina; a third went to Zimbabwe. The Lord alone knows how many these brothers reached for his glory.
The young man who was killed was the uncle I never met. My father was the next oldest brother after Earl. I am merely human and cannot explain the presence in this life of suffering and bereavement. But I believe that James was right when he wrote the following words:
“Consider it pure joy my brothers whenever you face trials of many kinds, because you know that the testing of your faith develops perseverance. Perseverance must finish its work so that you may be mature and complete, not lacking anything” (James 1:2-4).
The child of God cannot attain spiritual completeness without facing trials. The Africans have a saying: “After the rain, come the flowers.”
So how does your garden grow?

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