In Romans 5:3-5 there is a clear transition: suffering produces perseverance, perseverance produces character and character produces hope. This hope does not disappoint us as God has poured out his love into our hearts through the Holy Spirit. None of us like the concepts of suffering or perseverance. Through these trials God transforms us, knocks off the hard corners of our lives, refines us and, through the work of the Spirit, makes us in to the image of his Son.
During the message today we are looking at Daniel as an example of someone who endured many trials throughout his life, yet stayed faithful to God. He persevered even in the face of death, and maintained a depth of integrity and character that we can only aspire to.
Without doubt the process of transformation is a painful one. In Isaiah God is pictured as a potter and we, humanity, his clay. In the process of making pottery clay is squashed, pushed into shape, moulded, fired and glazed. Yet the Potter, our heavenly father, knows what he is doing. As we submit to him he can make something beautiful out of our lives.
In closing consider the song below.
Something beautiful, something good
All my confusion He understood
All I had to offer Him was brokenness and strife
But he made something beautiful of my life
(By Bill Gaither 1971)
Keep trusting God, because he is making something beautiful out of your life.