Ever have one of those questions in a Bible study that doesn’t just make you pause, but stop? The other day I had one of those. “How has God been glorified through adversity in your life?”

Wow! To reflect over all the adversity in my life and search for his glory meant turning over a few rocks I’d have preferred to leave where they sit. However, the honor student in me couldn’t just skip over the question. After some prayer, God showed me these things, which I’m dubbing 3 Ps and an R.

  • Much of the adversity in my life has been the result of my own doing. Whether you call it poor choices, stupidity, or sin, I was in a hole because I put myself there. God could have left me to the consequences of my actions. After all, I had ignored the warnings in his word. But he didn’t. God is faithful even when I am not. He is always patient with my shortcomings. As it says in Lamentations 3:22, “The faithful love of the Lord never ends! His mercies never cease.”
  • Adversity often brings financial issues. Again, some have been the result of my own doing, and some have not. Either way, I’ve been at the bottom, fearing my home would be taken from me, wondering how I would buy food, and staring at a bottomless well of medical bills. Through it all, God has been my provision. He paved the way for Hubby to step seamlessly from contract job to contract job in an industry where that isn’t common. God softened the hearts of creditors, extending due dates. He walked beside us the eight years it took to dig ourselves out of debt. “He provides food for those who fear him; he remembers his covenant forever.” Psalm 111:5
  • Hard times beat me down and made me feel defeated. I admit to dark thoughts. But God led me to a church where I could heal. Using them as his hands and feet, he rebuilt my faith. God prevailsWhatever darkness may be upon you, the light always wins. God stands in victory over circumstances. As Psalm 32:7 reads, “For you are my hiding place; you protect me from trouble. You surround me with songs of victory.”
  • Adversity causes damage to finances, relationships, health, even faith. However, after all of Job’s suffering, God redeemed all the man had lost. I’ve certainly found that to be true in my own life. The word redeem has many different connotations. Here are a few: to recover ownership of; to restore the honor, worth, or reputation of; to make up for. God did all of those things in my life. He mended friendships, salvaged my finances, and even repaired my faith. “He will redeem them from oppression and violence, for their lives are precious to him.” Psalm 72:14

God’s glory shone through all my adversity. But, in truth, he shines all the time. Every day, he is patient. Every day, he provides. Every day, he prevails over darkness. And every day, he redeems the lost.

“No longer will you need the sun to shine by day,
nor the moon to give its light by night,
for the Lord your God will be your everlasting light,
and your God will be your glory.” Isaiah 60:19

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