It’s the height of summer in Barrie. The temperatures are warm, many are away on vacation, barbeques are roasting away in back yards, and there’s another big festival at the waterfront. With all the bad news in the world, it’s good to have a few days to think of nicer things. The well-worn phrase is true, “the living is easy.” We Canadians put up with cold, messy weather most of the year and the living is tough. And when times are tough we learn, grow stronger, and become more patient. We think we’d like warm, easy weather all year long; but if we did we’d find ourselves weak in many ways.
Let’s expand that thought into life in general. Just as there are times when we seem to cruise along with few troubles, there are many periods in our lives when we must bear great burdens. Christians are not exempt. James said, “My brothers, whenever you have to face trials of many kinds, count yourselves supremely happy, in the knowledge that such testing of your faith breeds fortitude, and if you give fortitude full play you will go on to complete a balanced character that will fall short in nothing.” (James.1:2-4, New English Bible)
Don’t think you’ve done something wrong when tough times invade your ordered life. They happen to everybody. God hasn’t forgotten about you; He stands ready to help you with wisdom, strength and the blessings of maturity. Enjoy the easy times in life; but as James says, “count yourselves supremely happy” when times are tough. That’s when we really grow.