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A strange kind of joy
Andrea Delwiche
by Andrea Delwiche
July 5, 2024

Have you ever thanked God for helping you grow through times of testing? 

Listen in on this prayer of thanks and praise to God for a time of severe testing: “Praise our God, all peoples, let the sound of his praise be heard; he has preserved our lives and kept our feet from slipping. For you, God, tested us; you refined us like silver. You brought us into prison and laid burdens on our backs. You let people ride over our heads; we went through fire and water, but you brought us to a place of abundance” (Psalm 66:8-12).

This same strange joy is discussed in the New Testament book of James: “Consider it pure joy, my brothers and sisters, whenever you face trials of many kinds, because you know that the testing of your faith produces perseverance. Let perseverance finish its work so that you may be mature and complete, not lacking anything” (1:2-4).

Where in the last years have you experienced trials that have resulted in your faith being strengthened? In retrospect, are you able to see the growth in yourself? We are so loved by God. Even as he, who knows us best, works to refine us, he is also standing with us, desiring to be intimately involved in nourishing us as we grow through difficulties.

Holy Spirit, please reveal to me where you have been at work in my life, refining me. Help me see! Help me be open to your work. Help me grow! Amen.