Listen to this devotional:
Listen while you read: "Shall We Gather At The River"1 (Lyrics)
Romans 5:1-5 – Therefore, since we have been justified through faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ, through whom we have gained access by faith into this grace in which we now stand. And we rejoice in the hope of the glory of God. Not only so, but we also rejoice in our sufferings, because we know that suffering produces perseverance; perseverance, character; and character, hope. And hope does not disappoint us, because God has poured out his love into our hearts by the Holy Spirit, whom he has given us. (NIV)
I have one stronger fingernail.
Years ago, when I was vacuuming near my heirloom treadle Singer sewing machine, I decided to lift back its heavy cast iron functioning part and vacuum under it. When I finished and was hinging it down into its wooden storage compartment, it slipped out of my hand and suddenly dropped into its place. But as the metal part passed the edge of the wood, it cut off a small piece of the end of my left pointer finger, practically down to the bone. I looked in the wooden compartment for the piece of flesh. Sure enough, there it was! I grabbed tissues for the wounded finger. Then, in a clean sheet of waxed paper, I wrapped the piece, dropped it into a clean jar, and added a frozen wiener. (I had just cleaned my refrigerator and had thrown out my old ice cubes.)
With the bundle of tissues held tight on my finger, I phoned my neighbour. "Can you drive me to the hospital?" A brief questioning, and "All right." But she arrived with another neighbour, for she felt that she needed support.
The doctor stitched the piece back on and gave me hope that the finger would be all right there inside a bandage the size of a large apple, reined back to my wrist. The finger was very painful and healed slowly, but very well — and I'm thankful to God. Its fingernail is the strongest one that I have.
Adversities can strengthen us, physically and spiritually. "Tribulation worketh patience; and patience, experience; and experience, hope" (Romans 5:3b-4 KJV).
My tribulation was minor compared, for instance, with what many persons suffered through infections before the era of modern medications, and compared with what many have suffered through wars, insane acts of mass murder, and a vehicle run onto a pedestrian sidewalk recently.
Still, our hope is in the Lord who made heaven and earth, who loves us with an everlasting love and says, "Call to me and I will answer you and tell you great and unsearchable things you do not know" (Jeremiah 33:3 NIV).
Yes, rest in faith in Jesus, who has given His life for the propitiation of all of our sins, who hears all our prayers, and freely gives heaven for our eternal home.
Prayer: Lord, You have promised that if we call on You, You will show us great and unsearchable things. Lord, You have arisen out of immense adversity Yourself to reign as eternal God for us. Remind us to bring all adversities to You for Your care, for You heal everything from cuts to broken hearts. Amen.