Upon Facing Trials and Tribulations
“Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with the thanksgiving let your requests be known to God. And the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.” Philippians 4: 6-7
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There are two sides to every story, as there are two faces to every person. When things seem to be so bright, honest and pure in light, there is a secret lurking, hiding behind the facade that is pure and clean. The summer Olympics are in Rio this year, and as the Olympics have been viewed through rose colored lens as to hide the imposing threats of the Zika virus and ISIS, the funds that the Olympics would have brought to Rio have been cut short by the dangers that loom overhead. In short, Rio’s plans to revitalize its public sectors, so that it can pay its police force, revamp the roads, and clean-up their crime ridden streets, may not be the reality that the government had hoped for, since 25% of the tickets were not yet sold before the opening ceremony. However, Rio still clings to the hope that the Olympics will bring about some sort of positive change. Through all of this corruption and suffering, Rio still has hope, and we can take a cue from Rio and apply it to our own lives.
God said that we will face trials and tribulation in this world. He says in Psalm 34: 17-18, “When the righteous cry for help, the Lord hears and delivers them out of all the broken hearted and saves the crushed in spirit.” I know this to be true first hand, because I have gone through a long trial of tribulation as I was adjusting to my new life, and while there were times I wanted to completely give up on it, I had good people praying for me and, not to mention, enough sense to pray through it. While God gave us the resources in people, location, and finances to make our life better, He has also done it in His time, and as we are looking forward to the birth of our next child, we have arrived at a place where we are becoming more solid as a family and becoming more ready to take on our new addition.
Throughout it all, our marriage was strengthened, we love more and fight less. We have learned how to communicate with one another, without yelling and screaming. We have learned to let things go that bother us about the other, or to, at least, be more relaxed about them. We have become thankful that we have decided to endure the hard times, because now we know how much we mean to each other. Although, we “. . . still have miles to go before we sleep, and miles to go before we sleep,” (Robert Frost), God has helped to get us back on track and to remind us what we mean to one another, why we married each other, that His plan is working, and we are experiencing his gift of joy.
Whatever God’s plan is, Rio is going to be taken care of, just like God takes care of us, and will not be put to shame.
“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: 2-5
Sandy, Matt. “Amid Crises, Rio Readies for Its Olympic Closeup.” TIME 28 July 2016: n. pag. Print.
Robert Frost, “Stopping by Woods on a Snowy Evening” from The Poetry of Robert Frost, edited by Edward Connery Lathem. Copyright 1923, © 1969 by Henry Holt and Company, Inc., renewed 1951, by Robert Frost. Reprinted with the permission of Henry Holt and Company, LLC.
Tribulation: It’s Not What You Think!
Robert Frost also understands the benefits of suffering now to reap the rewards later:
Stopping by the Woods on a Snowy Evening.
Whose woods these are I think I know
His house is in the village though;
He will not see me stopping here
To watch his woods fill up with snow.
My little horse must think it queer
To stop without a farmhouse near
Between the woods and frozen lake
The darkest evening of the year.
He gives his harness bells a shake
To ask if there is some mistake.
The only other sound’s the sweep
of easy wind and downy flake.
The woods are lovely, dark and deep,
But I have promises to keep,
And miles to go before I sleep,
And miles to go before I sleep.