As I’ve been studying this week’s stanza of Psalm 119, the psalmist’s words “It is good for me that I was afflicted, that I might learn Your statutes” reminded me of the melancholy poet William Cowper’s beautiful stanza in “God Moves in a Mysterious Way”:
Ye fearful saints fresh courage take,
The clouds ye so much dread
Are big with mercy, and shall break
In blessings on your head.
Has it not been your experience that the greatest times of growth in godliness in your life have sprung from the greatest times of hardship? This is God’s perspective, which He gives us again and again in His Word—that blessing flows from affliction like oil is squeezed from the olive or juice is pressed from the grape. Are you being pressed, believer? May the Lord produce something sweet and useful to His kingdom from this affliction!