The following thoughts were suggested by Dennis Philipps, Pastor of First Baptist Church, Rockledge, Florida. I found his outline helpful.
God uses our problems to direct us. “The blueness of a wound cleanseth away evil: so do stripes the inward parts of the belly.” (Prov. 20:30)
God uses our problems to inspect us. Christians are like tea bags. If you want to know what is in them, place them in hot water. “My brethren, count it all joy when ye fall into divers temptations; 3 Knowing this, that the trying of your faith worketh patience.” (James 1:2-3)
God uses our problems to correct us. “Before I was afflicted I went astray: but now have I kept thy word. It is good for me that I have been afflicted; that I might learn thy statutes.(Psalm 119:67, 71)
God uses our problems to connect us. When we are sick, or wounded, others come to comfort us. “Now when Job’s three friends heard of all this evil that was come upon him, they came every one from his own place; Eliphaz the Temanite, and Bildad the Shuhite, and Zophar the Naamathite: for they had made an appointment together to come to mourn with him and to comfort him.” (Job 2:11)
God uses our problems to protect us. “But as for you, ye thought evil against me; but God meant it unto good, to bring to pass, as it is this day, to save much people alive.” (Gen. 50:20)
God uses our problems to perfect us. “God forbid: yea, let God be true, but every man a liar; as it is written, That thou mightest be justified in thy sayings, and mightest overcome when thou art judged.” (Rom. 3:4) “And we know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to his purpose.” (Rom. 3:4; 8:28)
God uses our problems to project us. Through tribulation we learn to focus on what is important. “For God is my record, how greatly I long after you all in the bowels of Jesus Christ.” (Phil. 1:8)
Every Christian will know problems. Adam and Eve discovered their son Cain had murdered his brother Abel. Noah became drunk. Abraham struggled with his faith over a promised child. Joseph was sold into slavery. Samson had his eyes put out and was blinded. Ruth lost her husband and faced poverty. David lost a beloved child. Daniel was cast into a den of lions. Jeremiah was violently opposed during his prophetic ministry. Peter and Silas were beaten for preaching the gospel. Paul was cast into prison for his faith.
So, what lessons of life will you learn through the problems you will face?