I am sure of this, that he who started a good work in you will carry it on to completion until the day of Christ Jesus. Philippians 1:6 (CSB)In Philippians 1, Paul was encouraging the church to stay pure and blameless with eyes fixed on Jesus. That call holds true today for us. God began a good work in each of us in our mother’s wombs. He created us uniquely and wonderfully. He gave us skills and gifts and talents designed only for us. No two of His created are exacly alike. We each possess a calling that only we can fulfill. He created us on purpose and for a purpose. He is beyond faithful to never stop this work in us in order to accomplish His work through us.
You rejoice in this, even though now for a short time, if necessary, you suffer grief in various trials so that the proven character of your faith—more valuable than gold which, though perishable, is refined by fire—may result in praise, glory, and honor at the revelation of Jesus Christ. Though you have not seen him, you love him; though not seeing him now, you believe in him, and you rejoice with inexpressible and glorious joy, because you are receiving the goal of your faith, the salvation of your souls. 1 Peter 1:6-9 (CSB)Often, when I go through trials and hardship, it becomes so easy for me to compare myself to others and imagine they never have it as hard as I do. It becomes easy for me to wonder why God allows me to experience pain. I know that God is good and that what He does is good. We live in a fallen and broken world. Tribulation comes, but Christ has overcome. These verses in 1 Peter remind us that there is always purpose that comes out of everything we go through. God doesn’t send it, but He sure does work it for our good and for His glory. Our pain and processes are not meant to sidetrack us from our callings; they are meant to further equip us for the long haul. It has always been God’s desire to bring us from glory to glory in our aim to be conformed to His image. He uses our hardships and roundabout journeys to do so. If we fully yield to His ways, He will bring us into deep places of intimacy with Him. We’ll develop a solid faith foundation. We’ll give Him praise and honor despite our circumstances, and we will live a life of thanks and of rejoicing in our many trials. The character He is refining within us is meant to withstand the fire around us. God will always value our character more than our outcome, and there is purpose in it all — the good, the bad, and the ugly.