The primary goal of life from God’s perspective is for each of us to grow in character to be as much like Jesus as is possible so that when we get to heaven He will enjoy us, and we will enjoy Him. God created us for the purpose of being with Him, to be part of His family, to fellowship, and to enjoy each other to the maximum. I enjoy people who are like me. Babies are cute, but I don’t take them fishing. Character is not created by God in us, it is developed in us over time, and we must cooperate with the process in order for character growth to take place. Character growth takes place in trials and hard times, so now is a time to grow rapidly, and I intend to take full advantage of present circumstances to grow as rapidly as possible.
James 1:2-4 Consider it all joy, my brethren, when you encounter various trials, knowing that the testing of your faith produces endurance. And let endurance have its perfect result, so that you may be perfect and complete, lacking in nothing.
Hebrews 6:1 let us press on to maturity,
Philippians 3:12-14 Not that I have already obtained it or have already become perfect, but I press on so that I may lay hold of that for which also I was laid hold of by Christ Jesus. Brethren, I do not regard myself as having laid hold of it yet; but one thing I do: forgetting what lies behind and reaching forward to what lies ahead, I press on toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus.
Those who are serious about growing rapidly in character know that times like now produce the most rapid growth possible, but only if we respond correctly, otherwise it does just the opposite and causes and results in significant character flaws.
Weak character doesn’t like rapid change. We like time to adjust to change so we can be secure and comfortable. Now change is happening almost daily, and those with weak character panic, fear, make poor decisions, talk way to much, and react selfishly. So I am going to choose to pray a lot and ask God for joy, peace, strength, and wisdom. I am going to choose not to enter into negative conversations about the present situation and future fears. I am going to choose to be joyful always, not in a “head in the sand way”, but in a way that communicates faith in God. I will remind myself at least daily that life is designed by God to be hard, full of trials, and extremely difficult, and heaven is wonderful beyond comprehension. Those who will enjoy heaven the most are those who enter into glory with the character of Christ.
So many people believe that because God loves us He will keep us from hard times in this life. The truth is God knows this life is a blink of an eye in length and then we will be in eternity. We need to “set our minds on the things above, not on the things of this earth”. We need to anticipate and expect hard times and grow through them.