Today’s Scripture: Thou therefore endure hardness, as a good soldier of Jesus Christ. 2┬áTimothy 2:3

In the Old Testament, Joseph was sold into slavery. King Saul hunted down David. Job lost his family and his health. In the New Testament, Christ was betrayed, beaten and crucified. Paul was imprisoned and later beheaded. Almost all of the original disciples, not counting Judas, were martyred. Only John lived to old age in exile.

Bad things do happen to good people. Bad things even happen to God’s people. Only the power of God can bring good out of even the worst situations.

One man said, “Being a Christian allows us to tap into the powers of Heaven in order to face the pains of earth.”

The Apostle Paul endured problems far beyond what you and I will ever experience. Yet, look at what happened as a result of Paul’s problems.

Because Paul was in prison, his brothers in the Lord grew more confident and started witnessing and preaching! Isn’t that exactly the paradox of Christianity? What should be a terrible problem-being imprisoned – is actually a means by which the gospel gets preached more.

How can we discover the hidden joy and purpose in even our worst trials? Ask God to give you His strength to trust Him even when it seems like things will never get better. This is the greatest trust of all.

Devotional by Pastor Jim Scudder, Jr.