Change is inevitable. As humans, we experience both joyous and difficult changes throughout our lives. While we often wish we could control every situation, the truth is there are many things we cannot change. During trying times, it’s natural to wrestle with acceptance. You may wonder, “How can I accept what I’m going through?” or “Why would God allow this?”
Though the path is not easy, the Bible offers hope and perspective for accepting the unchangeable trials in life. God promises to equip us to handle all circumstances and assures us that He works every hardship for our growth and His glory. Walking in acceptance brings freedom and aligns our heart with His truth.
- Acceptance requires surrendering control and trusting God’s sovereign plan.
- God uses trials to transform us into Christ’s image and draw us closer to Himself.
- Acceptance leads to freedom, joy, and peace.
- We can rejoice in suffering because of the hope we have in Christ.
- God promises to equip us to handle every trial we face.
Surrender Control and Trust God’s Sovereign Plan
One of the hardest parts of accepting difficulties is surrendering your desire for control. When faced with unwanted change, it’s natural to wrestle with the question: “Why is this happening?” You may be tempted to demand that God explain Himself or plead for Him to take the trial away. However, He calls us to a different response:
“Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways submit to him, and he will make your paths straight.” (Proverbs 3:5-6)
Proverbs teaches that Instead of relying on your own limited understanding, you must choose to trust in God’s infinite wisdom and sovereign plan. Though His ways are higher than yours, you can rest assured that the Lord works everything together for your good (Romans 8:28). Surrendering control requires humility and faith that God’s purpose is perfect, even when you cannot yet see how.
The apostle Paul knew this profound peace and confidence in God’s sovereignty. After being imprisoned for preaching the gospel, he wrote:
“Rejoice in the Lord always. I will say it again: Rejoice! Let your gentleness be evident to all. The Lord is near. Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.” (Philippians 4:4-7)
Though facing dire circumstances, Paul overflowed with joy and peace as He trusted every detail to God’s sovereign hand. His example reminds us that accepting hardship requires releasing control and humbly submitting to God’s transcendent understanding. He promises to guard our hearts and give peace when we bring our situations to Him in prayer with thanksgiving.
God Uses Trials to Transform Us
Not only does God allow trials for His sovereign purposes, but He also uses difficulties to spiritually transform us. Scripture says:
“We rejoice in our sufferings, knowing that suffering produces endurance, and endurance produces character, and character produces hope.” (Romans 5:3-4)
Here Paul explains that God uses trials to develop godly character in us, such as patience, perseverance, and hope. Hardships uniquely display our dependence and need for God. As we turn to Him for strength in difficulties, He shapes us to become more like Jesus:
“And we know that for those who love God all things work together for good, for those who are called according to his purpose. For those whom he foreknew he also predestined to be conformed to the image of his Son.” (Romans 8:28-29)
While trials are painful, God promises to use them for our ultimate good – to mold us into the image of Christ. Walking through difficulties with faith produces Christlike character, humility, and an unshakable hope in God alone.
Knowing God’s heart to use trials for our growth can help us accept his work in our lives. The next time adversity comes, remind yourself:
“Count it all joy, my brothers, when you meet trials of various kinds, for you know that the testing of your faith produces steadfastness.” (James 1:2-3)
Ask God to reveal areas where you need to grow more like Jesus. Allow difficulties to strengthen your faith and trust in God. Though the process is often painful, we can rejoice that God uses hardships to transform us for His glory.
Acceptance Leads to Freedom, Joy and Peace
It’s important to remember that acceptance does not necessarily mean liking your circumstances or having a positive attitude. Acceptance means acknowledging your situation and bringing it honestly before God. It’s being willing to follow Him one day at a time through your struggles. This posture of humility and surrender leads to profound freedom, joy, and peace:
“Now may the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace as you trust in Him, so that you may overflow with hope by the power of the Holy Spirit.” (Romans 15:13)
As you release control to God and thank Him in the trial, the Holy Spirit fills your heart with supernatural joy and peace that transcend circumstances. Though confusion, fear, and despair threaten to overwhelm you, His grace enables you to trust Him fully. As you fix your eyes on Christ, you gain eternal perspective to persevere one step at a time. This obedience unlocks freedom from anxiety and the confident hope that He will work even your most painful situations for good.
The book of James further explains why embracing trials with faith produces unhindered joy:
“Count it all joy, my brothers, when you meet trials of various kinds, for you know that the testing of your faith produces steadfastness. And let steadfastness have its full effect, that you may be perfect and complete, lacking in nothing.” (James 1:2-4)
Accepting trials is a great source of joy because of the transforming work God will accomplish in you. As you mature in Christlikeness, you will lack no essential thing. God Himself will supply every need as you trust Him through difficulties that require you to cast all burdens on Him alone.
Rejoicing in Suffering Through Our Hope in Christ
Not only can we have joy in the midst of trials, but we can rejoice because of our sufferings. How is this possible? The key is keeping an eternal perspective:
“Therefore we do not lose heart. Though outwardly we are wasting away, yet inwardly we are being renewed day by day. For our light and momentary troubles are achieving for us an eternal glory that far outweighs them all. So we fix our eyes not on what is seen, but on what is unseen, since what is seen is temporary, but what is unseen is eternal.” (2 Corinthians 4:16-18)
Paul endured incredible persecution, yet overflowed with joy because he kept his focus on the coming glory. No matter what you face, your current trials are “light and momentary” in comparison with the “eternal glory” awaiting you in Heaven. The daily troubles and earthly changes you experience are brief and fleeting. But what awaits you – perfect communion with Christ – is eternal and unchangeable. This heavenly hope allows us to rejoice despite earthly sorrow and loss.
Paul goes on to make the astonishing statement that our present sufferings are producing greater glory:
“Therefore we do not lose heart. Though outwardly we are wasting away, yet inwardly we are being renewed day by day. For our light and momentary troubles are achieving for us an eternal glory that far outweighs them all.” (2 Corinthians 4:16-17)
In his grace, God allows pain now to increase our capacity to joyfully receive His glory. As you endure, you store up heavenly rewards that expand your ability to glorify God in eternity. The trials producing groans now will give way to glory in Heaven! Though it feels unbearable, your suffering will not last forever. Let this eternal perspective guard your heart with inexpressible hope and joy.
God Equips You to Handle Every Trial
Not only does God work every situation for your growth, but He also promises to equip you to handle every trial you face:
“God is faithful; he will not let you be tempted beyond what you can bear. But when you are tempted, he will also provide a way out so that you can endure it.” (1 Corinthians 10:13)
No matter how difficult your circumstances, God faithfully ensures you will not be overwhelmed. He knows exactly what you can bear and promises to provide the strength, resources, and help you need at exactly the right time. When you feel you can’t endure, turn to Him in dependent prayer. Ask Him for strength, help, and wisdom to take the next step. He will surely answer and walk closely with you through the darkest valley.
Though you feel unequipped and afraid, you can have confidence in God’s promise:
“The LORD himself goes before you and will be with you; he will never leave you nor forsake you. Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged.” (Deuteronomy 31:8)
Take heart today that you never walk through trials alone. The God of the universe goes before you and promises to be with you always. He will not fail you, so you can confidently obey Him despite your fears or feelings. When discouraged, remember He understands your weaknesses and will give you the grace to accept and rejoice in His sovereign plan.
Life brings heartache, change, and trials we wish to avoid. While we long to be in control, God calls us to a more beautiful way – trusting Him and accepting every situation as an opportunity to rely on His promises and experience His perfect peace.
Surrendering to God’s sovereign plan requires humility and faith. Yet this posture leads to freedom from fear and dread. We can rejoice in God using trials to transform us into Christ’s image and draw us closer to Himself. No matter how difficult your circumstances, you have unshakable hope because of the coming glory. Allow God to equip you for each hardship, trusting His faithfulness and the eternal joy set before you.
Though the road is difficult, walking in acceptance aligns our hearts with God’s truth and enables us to receive His kingdom blessings. May you be filled with hope and confidence in His purpose today.