It is true that “calm seas never made a sailor.” It is through tribulation that we develop patience. It is through pressure that we are enlarged.
Even men of the world have realized that difficulties have educative and broadening values. Charles Kettering once said, “Problems are the price of progress. Don’t bring anything but problems. Good news weakens me.”
But especially from the Christian world come testimonies to the profit derived from trials. We read, for instance, “To suffer passes, but to have suffered endures for eternity.”
The poet adds this confirmation:
And many a rapturous minstrel among those sons of light
Will say of his sweetest music, “I learnt it in the night;”
And many a rolling anthem that fills the Father’s home
Sobbed out its first rehearsal in the shade of a darkened room.
Spurgeon wrote, in his inimitable way: I am afraid that all the grace I have got out of my comfortable and easy times and happy hours might almost lie on a penny. But the good I have received from my sorrows and pains and griefs is altogether incalculable. What do I not owe to the hammer and the file? Affliction is the best bit of furniture in my house.”
And yet why should we be surprised? Does not the unnamed writer to the Hebrews tell us, “Now obviously no chastening seems pleasant at the time: it is in fact most unpleasant. Yet when it is all over we can see that it has quietly produced the fruit of real goodness in the character of those who have accepted it” (Hebrew 12:11, PHILLIPS.)
366 soul-stirring daily meditations