Life is filled with options.
Either you can go to the park or go to the museum.
Either you can have chicken or beef.
Either you can run a mile or you can not.
These options, and more, shape the trajectory of our lives. It’s the choices that we make that determine the direction that we go.
As we make these choices we invariably encounter difficulties. We wonder whether we should have chosen differently, and if we had, whether things would have turned out better. We wonder what choice we should make to mitigate the trial we face. We ponder whether there is any way to minimize the pain.
As Christians face their trials they should recognize that God also has a choice in how He will deal with us as we walk through them. Either He will remove the trial, or He will give us what we need to navigate the difficult road in a manner that will glorify Him. Either He is preparing a way out or He is preparing us for the challenges we face. Despite how it may feel at times, He will not merely abandon us to our difficulties (see Mt. 28:20).
This should give the believer great comfort and great hope. The Christian knows that there is no trial that takes God by surprise. Therefore, for every difficulty there is a “game plan.” If the trial ends, than we know that God has ordained relief. If the trial persists, than we know that God has given us what we need to persevere in a manner that will bring Him praise. We can take comfort in the fact that He has already prepared us for whatever lies ahead. We can have hope that even when the days may be uncertain, He is not (see Ja. 1:17). Our trial may be weighty, but His burden is light (Mt. 11:30).
So the next time we are faced with something unexpected, or the next time that our feet seem trapped on a difficult road, let us take heart that one of two things will happen – the trial will end or we will be equipped for it. There is nothing that can be thrown at us that we can’t glorify Christ through. There is no road that we will walk that He hasn’t prepared us for. In Christ we are “more than conquerors” (Ro. 8:37) and regardless of the choices that life offers us, being in His care is the best option there is.