When troubles hit you hard

During 1889-90, American Methodist pastor Martin W Knapp went through a two-year period of adversity. He and His family were hit hard by disease and financial crises. The worst blow came on September 5, 1890, when his wife Lucy died after prolonged illness, leaving him with two little children.

He went on his knees before God and saw a vision of a rough piece of marble and a sculptor grinding and chiselling it. He saw the dust and the chips fill the air but noticed a beautiful image beginning to appear and The Lord spoke to him. “Son, you are that beautiful piece of marble. I have an image in my mind and I desire to produce it in your character. But, I will do so if you will stand the grinding. I will stop now if you so desire”. Knapp broke down saying “Lord, continue the chiselling and grinding”. There was no turning back then on.

Knapp went on to author many books, pamphlets and hymns and founded several spiritual institutions and prayer camps, becoming a source of strength and inspiration to many in their trials and tribulations. When you have nothing left but God, then you become aware that God is enough. We are safer in the midst of a storm than anywhere else without Him. Never let adversity get you down, except on your knees before God.

Saint James writes “Consider it pure joy, my brothers and sisters, whenever you face trials of many kinds. Because you know that the testing of your faith produces perseverance. Let perseverance finish its work so that you may be mature and complete, not lacking anything. If any of you lacks wisdom, you should ask God, who gives generously to all without finding fault, and it will be given to you. But when you ask, you must believe and not doubt, because the one who doubts is like a wave of the sea, blown and tossed by the wind. (James 1:2-6)

An eastern monarch asked his wise men to coin an aphorism which would be true and appropriate at all times and all situations. Their answer was “And this, too, shall pass away”. It is good to realise that when we are at the end of the rope, God is holding the other end.

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