Thought from the Heart

Sufferings Reveal Glory

Have you ever prayed to have a difficult circumstance or physical or emotional pain be removed? Either for yourself or for a loved one? Maybe, as parents, prayed for a protective barrier around your child so they would not be hurt? I have done this many times. Sometimes I even had the audacity to get mad at God when my specific demands were not met. I was acting like my prayers were instructions for God to follow—because I know what is best, of course. Yikes! There is nothing as humbling as realizing you are telling the Creator of the universe what to do! I am so thankful for His patience as I repent and He gently corrects me and teaches me what He needs me to learn. I once read a story of an Emperor moth emerging from its cocoon. The cocoon is bottle-shaped and the moth exits out of the narrow end of the cocoon. This is obviously done with great difficulty and struggle. Apparently, the pressure on the moth’s body as it fights its way through the tiny opening forces fluid into the wings to develop them. The person observing the moth in this story could not stand to watch it struggle any longer so decided to help it along by snipping the opening to allow an easier exit. The author states, “I thought I was wiser and more compassionate than its Maker…My misplaced tenderness had proved to be its ruin. The moth suffered an aborted life, crawling painfully through its brief existence instead of flying through the air on rainbow wings.” I find it much more difficult to watch somebody I love go through pain and suffering than it is to go through it myself. This story of the moth is a good reminder that we must trust God to do what is best. We can’t remove them from the pain and suffering or even try to keep them from it before it happens. Hardships and temptations are necessary to build character and grow deep spiritual roots. Our faith will not stand strong if it is never tested through hardship, pain, suffering and temptation. We need to trust God to lead us and our loved ones through the struggle so we are able to fly when we break free.