“A gem cannot be polished without friction. Nor can a person be perfected without trials.” – Lucius Annaeus Seneca
I don’t know about you, but I am no stranger to friction. Life has been full of it, and I feel pretty darn polished at this point in my life. People can define their friction in several ways: illness, strained relationships, failed marriages, loss of financial security. In other words, friction is defined as the trials that life hands out to each of us.
The good news is that we do survive our trials. In fact, we have survived 100 percent of our worst days. We pick ourselves up off the ground, dust ourselves off, and then we move on to face the next challenge. In the process, we are perfected. It’s Gospel good news for us, news we really need to hear.
Count it all joy, my brothers and sisters,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)
And just for good measure, I offer you the Good News Translation (GNT) of the same text:
My friends, consider yourselves fortunate when all kinds of trials come your way, for you know that when your faith succeeds in facing such trials, the result is the ability to endure. Make sure that your endurance carries you all the way without failing, so that you may be perfect and complete, lacking nothing.
So I plan to face off against life’s trials with confidence and courage, considering myself fortunate, counting it all joy!