I don’t know about you, but I often read through Paul’s (mis)adventures and wonder how he didn’t write one letter “venting” (the Christian-ese term for complaining. Yes, OUCH).
But, alas, there is not one in the entire new testament that I can find (no matter how hard I look during the times I want to scream injustice from the roof top).
So what can we learn about handling difficult, painful or “unfair” circumstances that we find ourselves in? Nothing. In the physical, at least. Trust me, no amount of kicking, screaming or anger can change your circumstances for the better. What can make an impact, however is putting your faith in the only One who can see you through. You see, what kept Paul focused on the task at hand and kept him from complaining was not the task at hand. Or making sure he was always treated fairly, or even the friends that surrounded him. What kept Paul praising in the jail cell wasn’t a what but rather a Whom. His faith in Jesus and maintaining his view of the eternal kept him pressing on. We were never meant to go through these circumstances alone, but rather Christ wants to walk us through. And at the end of the road we find that we are that much closer to Christ.