Tom Landry, longtime coach of the Dallas Cowboys, often told his players that “fatigue makes cowards of us all.” Most of us can handle a little bit of adversity, and some of us can handle a lot of adversity, but everyone has a breaking point. It doesn’t matter who you are or where you are or what your track record may be. We all have a breaking point, and sometimes we discover it without warning. There is a lesson here if we care to take it.
You’re not as strong as you think you are, and neither am I.
You’re not as wise as you think you are, and neither am I.
You’re not as clever as you think you are, and neither am I.
You’re not as self-sufficient as you think you are, and neither am I.
The mightiest oak tree in the forest looks invincible, but if you hit it in just the right place with a tiny ax, it comes crashing down. The ax may be small but it can bring down a tree in just a few seconds. It is a good thing that God sends us through fiery trials or else we would never see his glory.
I received a note from a man who had read one of my books after being diagnosed with cancer. He said he works 12-hour shifts and often goes high on the rooftops to pray late at night. Then he added this:
“It was while reading your book that God and I came to peaceful terms with cancer. Not only that but He gave me ability to see how cancer would be useful in His kingdom and in my life. Cancer clears away the cobwebs, cancer clarifies, cancer makes concise, cancer enables you to find comfort in God and freedom from the world’s entrapments.”
If he had not had cancer, he would never have discovered these things. Cancer may not be “good” in and of itself, but it can be good to have cancer if out of that crisis, you come to a new understanding of God.
We learn more in the darkness than we do in the light.
We grow stronger in affliction than when the sun is shining and all is well.
Out of weakness we discover God’s strength.
It is a great advance spiritually to be able to say, “Thank you for this trial because it brought me closer to you.”