8 powerful things that come from dark, dry, and desert seasons
No one likes going through hard times, but it seems as if God uses these times to work his grace and character in our lives in a way we may never know otherwise. He does some of his deepest work in our hearts during the dark, dry and desert seasons.
According to the Bible we know trials are producing in our hearts a number of important and eternal things that otherwise we would be missing:
Proverbs tells us there is nothing you and I should desire more than wisdom. It’s more valuable than gold or silver. God uses trials and difficult circumstances to teach us, to train us and to give us experience so we can minister to the needs of others. We’ve been there, done that, and seen God’s faithfulness to bring us through to the other side. Therefore, we can speak with authority and help those struggling.
Peter told us not to be surprised by trials, because they are proving the genuineness of our faith. (1 Peter 1:7) Unless we are tested, we don’t know what we have learned. Likewise in our faith, we are tested to show that we aren’t sunny day Christians, but we are in it for the long haul. Like Peter who replied, "Lord you have the words of eternal life," when Jesus asked if his disciples were going to leave, where are we going to go? Simon Peter replied, "Lord, to whom would we go? You have the words that give eternal life." John 6:68
Not only that, but we also rejoice in our sufferings, because we know that suffering produces perseverance; perseverance, character; and character, hope. 5And hope does not disappoint us, because God has poured out His love into our hearts through the Holy Spirit, whom He has given us.
God is working hope in our lives through suffering. How? In the midst of the pain, God meets us and makes his promises and word real to us. He is close to the brokenhearted. He gives us a vision of a better eternity, one in his embrace, surrounded by his love. And in that we have hope in the promises of God coming to pass.
Whoever said following Jesus was for those who needed a crutch in life, had it all wrong. Following Jesus is not easy, it’s not for the faint of heart. We need perserverance, because there are dozens of temptations everyday that tell you it’s just not worth it. Going through hard times, teach us to press through until we breakthrough and in that breakthrough our strength is renewed and we find our hearts are stronger the next time around. It’s like Roger Bannister breaking the four minute mile. Once he did it, runners around the world began to believe it was possible and it became more and more common. Likewise, once we go through a time we never thought was possible to make it through and we come out the other side, other situations don’t appear half as difficult.
God is a rewarder and he promises good things to those who persevere and endure for his sake. In Hebrews 10:36 we read, For you have need of endurance, so that when you have done the will of God you may receive what is promised.
When we endure, we are rewarded, partially in this life, fully in the life to come. To every church in the book of Revelation, Jesus spoke of rewards for endurance and staying faithful through suffering. Revelation 3:11 says, “I am coming soon. Hold on to what you have, so that no one will take your crown. 12 The one who is victorious I will make a pillar in the temple of my God. Never again will they leave it. I will write on them the name of my God and the name of the city of my God, the new Jerusalem, which is coming down out of heaven from my God; and I will also write on them my new name. 13 Whoever has ears, let them hear what the Spirit says to the churches.”
Just as we want our own children to grow up and become productive adults, so God does not want us to remain as infants in our faith. Since we are his ambassadors on the earth, he has a vested interest in making us mature in the faith and a light for him. So when we allow trials and pain to work in our lives, God does a work maturing us to become servants of the Lord.
Complete, not lacking anything.
God is building our character, forming our hearts and making us into his image when we walk through trials. James said it this way, Consider it pure joy, my brothers and sisters,[a] whenever you face trials of many kinds, 3 because you know that the testing of your faith produces perseverance. 4 Let perseverance finish its work so that you may be mature and complete, not lacking anything. As we submit to the Lord’s dealings in our life, we are changed and become people of maturity, wholeness and have everything we need to navigate life and help others find their way as well.
God is ultimately conforming us to the image of Christ. The book of Romans tells us Christ is the firstborn among many brethren. In other words, God wants to replicate his Son in our lives, meaning we need to change and become like him. This process of transformation happens in adversity as God, the Potter, puts us on his wheel and turns us and fashions us to look like him.
The truth is the world is waiting for the sons and daughter of God to be manifested in the earth. Submitting to God’s dealings, makes us a reflection of his grace to a watching world.