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How God Uses Tough Times 
By Rick Warren

“That is why we never give up. Though our bodies are dying, our spirits are being renewed every day. For our present troubles are small and won’t last very long. Yet they produce for us a glory that vastly outweighs them and will last forever!” 2 Corinthians 4:16-17 (NLT)

You are never a failure until you quit, and it’s always too soon to quit. God uses tough times to test your persistence.

The difference between faithful people and unfaithful people is that unfaithful people give up at the first sign of difficulty. Faithful people keep on keeping on. 

Faithful people are determined. Faithful people are diligent. Faithful people are persistent. Faithful people don’t know how to quit. You know how a little acorn becomes an oak tree? An oak tree is just an acorn that refused to give up. 

When we started Saddleback Church, I thought we’d quickly get into a building. But we went 15 years without one. In the first 13 years of the church, we used 79 different facilities. You know how many times I felt like giving up? Just every Monday morning! 

Saddleback grew to more than 10,000 people before we built our first building. How would you like to set up and take down a church for 10,000 people every week? There’s not a lot of glory in that. It’s just hard work. God uses tough times to test our persistence.

If you’re going through tough times right now, then this verse is for you: “That is why we never give up. Though our bodies are dying, our spirits are being renewed every day. For our present troubles are small and won’t last very long. Yet they produce for us a glory that vastly outweighs them and will last forever!” (2 Corinthians 4:16-17 NLT). 

God is more interested in what you’re becoming than what’s happening to you. He often allows trials, troubles, tribulations, and problems in your life to teach you diligence, determination, and character. What about the problems you’re going through right now? They’re a test of your faithfulness. Will you continue to serve God even when life stinks? 

“Let us not become weary in doing good, for at the proper time we will reap a harvest if we do not give up” (Galatians 6:9 NIV).

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This devotional © 2018 by Rick Warren. All rights reserved. Used by permission.

You can listen to Rick Warren on OnePlace.com.