As my mind pursued this deeper, I was reminded of a passage of Scripture from Paul's second letter to the Corinthians, chapter 8, verses 1 to 3: "Moreover, brethren, we do you to wit of the grace of God bestowed on the churches of Macedonia; How that in a great trial of affliction the abundance of their joy and their deep poverty abounded unto the riches of their liberality. For to their power, I bear record, yea, and beyond their power they were willing of themselves."
We are often tempted to believe that Christians who seem to have everything going for them, and who are equally liberal in their giving to meet whatever needs come their way, are those who have never had a "down" day nor had any part in their own prosperity. Their lives appear flawless and unscarred by the trials we may have known. In truth, often these blessed who become blessings have done so through severe experiences that have gouged their permanent scars on their lives.
Paul's counsel to the church in this passage gives the secret to liberality in its understanding and yieldedness to God as the Source of supply, reaped and heaped through patient and willing humility mirroring the Lord (Note: II Corinthians 8:9 "For you know the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ, that though He was rich, yet for your sakes He became poor, that you through His poverty might become rich." So pray that you might fill such an image as well.
I wrote these lines to illustrate the process:
Trial cuts a river channel in each life.
With each stroke of the bruising pick, with every scoop of anguish borne,
The place scars deeper, hinting at an open wound that will not heal.
Oh, how can such scarring and marring
Of life's land ever bless, or bring refreshing rest?
But yield, oh life, to this great pain,
For through the channel God sends His rain.
Fountains of His love spring forth to flow in abundance,
Directed through each scar to quinch the thirsty world that awaits,
And the depth of the wound controls
How much may flow or how little may go.
Then miracle, oh life, the living water borne through your scars
Also cleanses and cools your pain.
So, sing out for joy, oh life, as suffering digs deep into your soil,
For deeper wounds bring more abundance
Of life's living, eternal, and refreshing source.
Dear ones, when the trials come to you, they are allowed by the Sovereign Father, not to punish and bring you down, but to polish you as His prized trophy that gives hope to others who also walk through the valleys. Be encouraged today. He is still on the throne, come what may.