Long before we trod the earth, godly saints have undergone many trials (Hebrews 11:32-40). How did they get through them? Here three testimonies that will hopefully encourage you:
“In the late 17th century in … France, a girl named Marie Durant was … charged with the Huguenot heresy [of being a Calvinist]. She was fourteen years old … and was asked to [renounce] the Huguenot faith. She was not asked to commit an immoral act, to become a criminal, or even to change the day-to-day quality of her behaviour. She was only asked to say, “J’abjure”. No more, no less. She did not comply. Together with thirty other Huguenot women she was put into a tower by the sea … for thirty-eight years she continued [this way] … And instead of the hated word ‘J’abjure’ she … scratched on the wall of the prison tower the single word ‘Resistez!’, resist …
We cannot understand a faith which is not nourished by the temporal hope that tomorrow things will be better. To feel this and still to persevere seems almost idiotic to a generation [like today’s] which has no capacity to wait and endure” …
Benjamin Warfield was a world-renowned theologian… But what most people don’t know is that in 1876, at the age of twenty-five, he married Annie Kinkead … During a fierce storm [on their honeymoon], she was struck by lightening and permanently paralysed. [Warfield looked after her for thirty-nine years before her death, and they never had children].
Charles Simeon was in the Church of England from 1782 to 1836 and … was appointed to his church by a bishop against the will of the people. They opposed him … because he was an evangelical [who] believed in the Bible and called for conversion, holiness, and world evangelisation. For some twelve years the people refused to let him give the Sunday afternoon sermon … and locked their pews so no one could sit in them. He preached to people in the aisles for twelve years! … Simeon lasted fifty-four years [as the pastor of that parish]”
– Chapter 13 of ‘Future Grace: The Purifying Power of the Promises of God’, by John Piper. Emphases added.
Let us keep these godly examples in mind with the words of William Cowper: “Judge not the Lord by feeble sense, but trust Him for His grace. Behind a frowning providence He hides a smiling face”.
~ God bless, Pastor Haydn.