We tend to believe all hardship in our lives comes from the enemy.
We lose our job. The enemy must be attacking.
A family member gets sick. We think the enemy is behind it.
Accusations arise against us. We know the enemy is out for our reputation.
Money gets tight. The enemy is after our future.
The car breaks down. The enemy is messing with our day.
Work gets hard, the kids get in trouble and God’s promise doesn’t happen when we thought it would. The enemy is clearly to blame.
He is the author of hardship.
He is the master of pain.
He is the one who makes our lives difficult.
God would never author hardship in our lives.
But the Israelites’ exodus out of Egypt paints a different story.
Every time Moses stood before Pharaoh, every time he demanded the Israelites go free, every time he stretched out his hand and a plague was unleashed against Egypt, something interesting happened.
God hardened Pharaoh’s heart.
“And when the Israelites saw the mighty hand of the Lord displayed against the Egyptians, the people feared the Lord and put their trust in him and in Moses his servant.” Exodus 14:31
God allowed a season of hardship into the life of the Israelites. He was behind their increased turmoil and pain. He was the one who sent the Egyptian army chasing after them in the desert even after the Israelites had gone free.
Because God had a bigger plan.
He knew what would happen in their lives when the Egyptians were overthrown.
He knew how the pain would mold and shape them into the men and women He called them to be.
He knew how their faith would grow when they saw Him move.
He knew the outcome was better than giving them a comfortable life.
Every hardship positions us to see God do something mighty.
He will let us to experience loss if it means He gets to take care of us.
He will allow the accusations if it develops our character.
He will let us experience hardship, trials and turmoil if it builds our trust.
Every hardship, every doubt, every season of turmoil and loss and attack is being used to build our faith and show us a greater glimpse of God’s character.
It’s how He grows us into the men and women He has called us to be.
How has God used hardships in your life to display His power and grow you closer to Him?