"We do not want you to be uninformed, brothers, about the hardships we suffered in the province of Asia. We were under great pressure, far beyond our ability to endure, so that we despaired even of life. Indeed, in our hearts we felt the sentence of death. But this happened that we might not rely on ourselves but on God, who raises the dead." 2 Corinthians 1:8-9
Have you ever gone through a very difficult time in your life? These times make us value life. They make us appreciate the simple things that we took for granted before the crisis. When we are restored from such a trial, it is as though we have been given a new beginning. We can place a greater value on what we had before and use it for His purposes. Perhaps for the first time we can identify with others who find themselves in a similar trial.
I recall having an attitude of superiority over those who went through a difficult financial crisis. Because I had never experienced any financial crisis in my life, this pride kept me from identifying with such people. Then the Lord brought such a trial into my life. I learned a great deal during that period. I learned that the world and even Christians often treat such people as lepers. Like me, they didn't know how to relate. Now, I appreciate the little things that I never would have valued without that trial. The experience taught me greater dependence and faith in the provision area of my relationship with God.
When God brings death to one area of life, he resurrects it in a new way. Death works in us to bring new life and new perspectives. These are designed to press us forward in ways that we never would have moved without the experience. God knows how much this is needed in our life to gain the prize He has reserved for each of us. It is His strategic mercy that motivates Him to bring such events into our life. Press into Him, learn of Him, and rely on Him.