“Therefore, since we have been justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ. Through him we have also obtained access by faith into this grace in which we stand, and we rejoice in hope of the glory of God. More than that, we rejoice in our sufferings, knowing that suffering produces endurance, and endurance produces character, and character produces hope, and hope does not put us to shame, because God’s love has been poured into our hearts through the Holy Spirit who has been given to us.“—Romans 5:1-5
I’m realizing, more and more… just how important— just how needed “character” is…
God knows we need it.
And He knows exactly where we need to be aligned and strengthened…
He knows our weak areas,
…the areas our enemy is “delightfully” aware of…
How we NEED God to build this character-strength within us.
We need Him to build character into our hearts, into our lives.
We NEED what only He can teach us.
We NEED what only He can do in our hearts.
I feel like that’s part of what He’s been doing in my life—a little more intensely, over the last couple of years.
A lack of character can cause us to crumble and fall, and God knows this.
And because He loves us, many times He’ll allow things into our lives like…
- troubles, trials, and tribulations
- tough, sometimes painful lessons
- facing things we don’t like to face
- the purification process
- learning patience in times of waiting…
And of course, sometimes we stumble,
and we might even take a tumble…
…as we go through these “character building” exercises with Him.
But He so faithfully continues to lead us,
and to help us,
and to build capacity within us…
Because He KNOWs that we need what we can GAIN…
from going through these things with Him.
That we may be able to grow, made able to stand strong…
—confident in Him…
…like a tree firmly planted, deeply rooted…
nourished by His eternal stream.
A tree that will not wither,
but will grow strong, and flourish…
and produce GOOD fruit in its season.
“He will be standing firm like a flourishing tree
planted by God’s design,
deeply rooted by the brooks of bliss,
bearing fruit in every season of life.
He is never dry, never fainting,
ever blessed, ever prosperous.
4 But how different are the wicked.
They are like chaff blown away by the wind.
5 The wicked will not endure the day of judgment,
for God will not defend them.
Nothing they do will succeed or endure for long,
for they have no part with those who walk in truth.”—Psalm 1:3-5
“But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness…”—Galatians 5:22
So Father, I thank You for all that You are taking me through…these character building lessons…this growth process…
You take me through them because You love me, and You want me to grow strong, full of capacity—firmly planted in You.