Our fathers disciplined us for a short time as they thought best, but God disciplines us for our good, so that we may share in His holiness. No discipline seems enjoyable at the time, but painful. Later on, however, it yields a peaceful harvest of righteousness to those who have been trained by it. Therefore strengthen your limp hands and weak knees. Make straight paths for your feet, so that the lame will not be debilitated, but rather healed. 2 Timothy 2:10-13
As believers, we are going to face opposition in our lives from all sides. People, situations, tragedies, and even spiritual forces are going to come up against us. And God is always there in the midst of whatever we encounter; He’s a good Father and wants to train us and build us up so that we can stand firm and persevere through any challenge. He does this by allowing us to face resistance and the opportunity to rise out of it, praising Him and shaking loose from the things that would hold us down.
To me, it’s like going to the gym. I always procrastinate and dread the trip to the gym because I know I am about to submit my body to uncomfortable stretches, weights, and cardio that is going to push my body out of its comfortable heart rate. I’m going to get sweaty and hot. And even once I get in there and start working out, I find myself in the middle of the hard work, and want to quit. But I usually don’t. I’m already here, I’m starting to enjoy the challenge, and it will be over before I know it.
What I absolutely know is that when I leave the gym and have accomplished a workout I NEVER regret I came. Now believe me, the next time I go it’s actually going to be a little bit easier to do the same workout, and I will STILL dread the moments up to walking in. But I never am sad that I went through the workout after it’s over.
Use this encouragement if you are getting ready to head into a battle of sorts, or feel like you’re right in the middle of it. You are being trained to persevere, and being given the opportunity to increase in strength and wisdom. After you’ve been through it, you’ll look back and see the gains you made and know it was worth it to struggle. God needs you strong for His battles; will you submit to His training?