Romans 5:3-5 – “And not only this, but we also exult in our tribulations, knowing that tribulation brings about perseverance; and perseverance, proven character; and proven character, hope; and hope does not disappoint, because the love of God has been poured out within our hearts through the Holy Spirit who was given to us.” (NASB)
The first two attempts were met with failure. While attempting to advance in my career as a fire fighter, I took the promotional exam for lieutenant - not once but three times. The first two ended with my grade being so low that I was not appointed to the position. It was four years between exams which meant I could either sulk for four years or turn my attention to learning the material so I would have hope for my third attempt. Today's verse speaks of exulting in our tribulations, know that it brings perseverance, then proven character, and finally hope. A hope that won't disappoint us because of the love of God that is within our hearts through the Holy Spirit. As I walked into the room to take the promotional exam for the third time, I had hope because I had gone through the tribulation of the earlier exams and found hope in my failure. In our walk on this earth, we will face trials and tribulations, but it's what we do through them that will make the difference. I am reminded of Christ as He suffered through the journey to the Cross, the beating and whipping that left His body tattered and torn, yet He never gave up or gave in. He is the best example for us no matter what we face. Exult in your tribulations for it will bring about some great character and hope for things to come – and the hope of Christ doesn't disappoint!
TOM SEMBER has been involved in ministering to men for over 20 years. He is an ordained minister with the AG in the NY Ministry Network. Tom lives with his wife, Carolyn, and children in New York. You can connect with Tom on Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn.
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