1 Peter 1:7 ~ Trials show that your faith is genuine…when your faith remains strong through many trials, it will result in praise and glory and honor at the appearing of Jesus Christ.
Starfish are creatures which have the miraculous ability to regenerate themselves. Some starfish can regenerate a lost limb in as little as a few months. Even more amazing is that fact that some species of starfish have the ability to re-grow an entire starfish from the limb that is broken off! Even though that sounds impossible, the starfish limb can live off the stored nutrients within itself, and use that energy to begin growing a new disk. Eventually, if it survives long enough, it can even grow a whole new mouth, and then start eating again, while it continues re-growing the rest of its limbs.
Jesus took a stringent view of spiritual regeneration – He said, “If your right eye causes you to sin, tear it out and throw it away. For it is better that you lose one of your members than that your whole body be thrown into hell. And if your right hand causes you to sin, cut it off and throw it away. For it is better that you lose one of your members than that your whole body go into hell.” Matthew 5:29-30
God invites us into this radical path toward spiritual regeneration, encouraging us with the fact that we cannot regenerate ourselves – it is an amazing and miraculous work that He alone can do – “Not by works of righteousness which we have done, but according to His mercy He saved us, by the washing of regeneration, and renewing of the Holy Ghost.” Spiritual regeneration is where God takes that which is dead and useless which has been willingly surrendered to Him, making those dead things alive and useful for His glory and honor!
Alex Haley, the author of “Roots,” had an unusual picture hanging on his office wall. It was a picture of a turtle on top of a fence post. This picture always reminded him that he did not achieve success on his own. He said, “I look at the turtle on top of the fence post & remember that he didn’t get there on his own. He had help.”
Maybe we should all a picture of a turtle on a fencepost to remind us of our complete dependence on God to bring about genuine regeneration of heart and soul and mind.
Trials are the crucible in which perseverance is forged. We are always in the forge, or on the anvil;by trials God is shaping us for higher things.
~ Henry Ward Beecher ~
Lord, Make Us More Like You, (Whatever the Cost),