“The servants asked him, ‘Do you want us to go and pull them up?’” (Matt. 13:28)

A HIKER ONCE FOUND A COCOON clinging to a twig and took it home and put it in a jar. Later, when he saw the moth trying to emerge through a small crack in the cocoon, the man enlarged the opening with scissors. However, when the moth appeared, its body was swollen and its wings shriveled, and it stayed that way. This happened because the struggle through the tiny crack was intended to force the moth’s body fluid into its wings. Without that effort, the wings never developed. In a spiritual sense, that frequently occurs when we reject a struggle that God meant to help us grow. We miss the lessons we might otherwise have learned.

David discovered this when, despite God’s promise that he was to be king of Israel, he found himself an outlaw on the run from Saul. The easy solution for God would have been to sweep aside obstacles and install David on the throne, yet it never happened. Later David learned that the years of adversity strengthened his character and insight to rule as king. God used the hard times to help him develop.

Are you struggling? Have you prayed for release? If so, then remember that just as the moth’s struggle enables it to fly, perhaps your problem—with God’s help—will enable you to develop your own wings to serve Him.

Think about how a past problem caused you to grow spiritually.

Anne Adams lives in Athens, Texas, where she writes a weekly historical column for the Athens Review newspaper.

© 2018 Wesleyan Publishing House. Reprinted from Light from the Word. Used by permission.