I have heard such a story: The course of eagles’ growth is cruel. In order for the eaglets to hover in the sky, the mother eagle will push them over the cliff when their feathers are full. While they are falling, eaglets exhaust all their strength to flutter to survive. Through struggling painfully, finally they can fly. However, for the sake of letting them soar in the high sky, the mother eagle will break their wings and push them over the cliff again. This time, they will suffer more pain than before. Yet no matter how painful they are, they still have to flutter their broken wings. Because only by doing this can they hover in the high sky; otherwise, they will never be able to fly in the blue sky.
Why do eaglets need to undergo such harsh training in the course of growing up? Because only through such cruel training can they soar in the high air. Similarly, we will meet many difficulties in our lives as eaglets do, and these difficulties are exactly what God meticulously arranges for training us to grow up.
But we often can’t see the value of undergoing such difficulties, or know that these difficulties actually are stepping stones to our success. So we, from our hearts, are afraid of meeting with difficulties, and resist difficulties, expecting our lives be peaceful, smooth and eternally easy. Actually, our thinking like this is most foolish. As the Bible says: “The prosperity of fools shall destroy them” (Proverbs 1:32). Lusting for leisure, we will become depraved, and become parasites; even more, lusting for leisure, we will be satiated with food and remain idle, finally accomplishing nothing and living in vain.
A common saying goes: “The sharpness of a sword comes from grinding; the fragrance of plum blossoms comes from the bitter cold.” Only by being tempered repeatedly can iron be turned into quality steel. So, if we want to have genuine growth, we can’t be separable from the trials that God carefully arranges for us.
In our life experiences, God arranges some difficulties and even tribulations for all of us. When encountering difficulties, failure and setbacks, some people will be defeated and never cheer up from then on, while others will grope forward constantly. After experiencing frequent stumblings, they gradually become strong, mature and steady, being able to take responsibility for things; meanwhile, some of their rashness as well as conceit is diminished. After passing through the difficulties, they become those who are just like a piece of quality steel tempered repeatedly, a bonsai tree carefully clipped, a phoenix getting a new life through the baptism of fire, or an eaglet soaring in the sky through the training of wings’ being broken. Difficulties actually make their life splendid.
Since difficulty is a paving stone to success, then how should we face and experience it?
The Bible says: “Finally, my brothers, be strong in the Lord, and in the power of his might. … Why take to you the whole armor of God, that you may be able to withstand in the evil day, and having done all, to stand” (Ephesians 6:10, 13). “Therefore you delivered them into the hand of their enemies, who vexed them: and in the time of their trouble, when they cried to you, you heard them from heaven; and according to your manifold mercies you gave them saviors, who saved them out of the hand of their enemies” (Nehemiah 9:27). Exactly, sometimes difficulty is like a wall erected in front of us, and it’s hard for us to get it over. But God’s good intentions of arranging difficulties are to better shape us, but not to frustrate us. At this time, so long as we learn to rely on God to get over this “wall”, we will see that success is waiting up ahead for us.
If you are facing difficulties in your life, please don’t be discouraged, nor be disappointed. Because God knows all what we are experiencing, and He is observing us in secret all the time, and waiting for our sincere prayers. When we are willing to call on Him, He will help us overcome all difficulties and climb over all hurdle walls in front of us.