This was originally posted on another blog October 2010
I was thinking about pearls today. Did you know that a natural pearl starts from a microscopic irritation or parasite that invades a mollusk? Yup. The offending item gets surrounded as a way to protect the clam and as layer after layer forms to isolate the irritation, something beautiful and precious emerges.
In James 1, after some talk about the benefit of persevering under trials (and counting as joy?), a few verses later says this:
“Every good gift and every perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of lights with whom there is no variation or shadow due to change.” (Jas 1:17 HCSB)
Trials and irritations in our life can either destroy us; resulting in bitterness, anger, wrath and other not so nice attributes, or they can create in us character that shines for the glory of God. Peace, joy, faithfulness. . . a gift.
A pearl starts with a minor irritation. Maybe you have a major one in your life; a spouse that’s challenging, or a kid that has special needs, or a chronic health issue or pain. It’s up to you to decide whether you will take the irritant that you cannot expel (clams are unable to simply kick the irritant out of their shell), and let it fester or allow it to grow wonderful things in your heart.
Godly character cannot be manufactured. Pearls can be grown and ‘cultured” – but they do not compare in the quality and priceless value of one that begins wild, organic, in the ocean starting with an irritant. We can fake it if we want, but when compared to true character, we will pale in comparison to someone who has allowed trials to mold and polish them in the image of Christ.
I want to shine. I want to shimmer and reflect God’s goodness and love to me that covers all those yucky irritations in my life. Heck, I should have a glorious string of pearls at this point in my life! Maybe they will be part of the crown Jesus gives me when I meet Him in the heavenlies!
I’m praying that today you recognize the beauty that comes as you persevere through trials so you can have an incomparable iridescence as the priceless treasure that you are to our King! Blessings!