Several years ago I attended a Catalyst Conference for pastors and ministers. One of the keynote speakers was Andy Stanley who pastors at North Point Ministries, a multi location church in Atlanta. In his address he said, “Some of you may be wondering why you’re not up here speaking. More than likely it’s because you haven’t been through enough adversity.” He went on to share some of the adversity his family had been through. He also talked about some of the things the other speakers had been through. His dad once said, “If you want God’s best for your life and desire to be used by Him, at some point you’re going to have to travel the road of adversity. God designed adversity to be a turning point from which you take your greatest leaps forward in spiritual growth.”
After David had been anointed king, he was chased by King Saul. In one of those instances he had to flee the country and live with the Philistines. David had agreed to fight Israel with the Philistines and other armies, but the other kings were afraid David would turn on them. They sent him home to Ziklag where he had been living. When he approached the city, they saw smoke. The Amalekites knew it would be unprotected so they attacked it, burned down all their homes and possessions and took their wives and kids. David and his men wept until they couldn’t weep anymore. His men were bitter and began to talk openly about stoning him. 1 Samuel 30:6 says, “But David found strength in the Lord his God” (NLT). He consulted the Lord, found out their wives and kids were still alive, tracked them down, attacked the Amalekites and set them free.
Psalm 34:19 says, “The righteous person faces many troubles, but the Lord comes to the rescue each time.” This verse reminds us that we are going to face a lot of trouble in our lives, but it also gives hope that God will rescue us each time. God will use adversity for your good. He also won’t let it last longer than it needs to once it has produced in you what He needs accomplished. He uses it to birth character, strength, endurance and so much more in us. It’s hard to see that as you’re walking through it, but when you look back on the times you’ve walked down the road of adversity, you can see God’s hand in it, how He delivered you from it and the good things He produced in you. It can still be painful to look back on, and you might not have all the answers as to why, but you can know that God never abandoned you on the road of adversity and He used it to get you to a place you never could have been without it.