When we long for life without difficulties, remind us that oaks grow strong in contrary winds and diamonds are made under pressure. (Peter Marshall, late US Senate chaplain)

Who doesn’t want a life of ease with a minimum of trials and difficulties? Yet, as Marshall points out, healthy growth always involves a certain amount of tension and pressure. Without it, we don’t learn how to stand up, much less move forward and make progress. While we don’t look for or create difficulties, we must respond to them with perseverance if we wish to grow.

We can rejoice, too, when we run into problems and trials, for we know that they help us develop endurance. (Romans 5:3)