Adversity - Hope 103.2


Morning Devotions is for those curious about the Christian faith and who want to explore Christian issues that relate to their daily life.

By Chris WittsTuesday 21 Apr 2015Morning Devotions with Chris WittsCultureReading Time: 0 minutes


The board game “Monopoly” is a famous game played by millions of people. Do you know the one I mean? With new forms of entertainment today,”Monopoly” has probably lost some of its attraction. But did you know how it was invented? Charles Darrow and his wife had to overcome tremendous adversity to succeed in life. Back in 1932 Charles  was out of a job and had no money,and his wife was expecting a baby. Although he was a heating engineer,there were no jobs available and Darrow and his wife were just barely subsisting on the few odd jobs he could get as a handyman. Things were bleak. Fate didn’t reckon with the courage of this man and his wife,however. They laughed at it,literally. In the evenings,to take their minds off their troubles,they made a little game in which they could pretend they were millionaires,recalling pleasant vacations in nearby Atlantic City. They reconstructed the area adjoining the boardwalk. Darrow carved hotels and houses out of small pieces of wood,and they called the game Monopoly. Three years later,in 1935 the game was marketed by Parker Brothers,and Darrow and his wife became millionaires because they allowed adversity to make them instead of break them. It’s a great story of overcoming odds. This married couple refused to let their difficulties overcome their joy and they asked God for His help.

There are many other stories of people who faced their adversities and went on to great achievements ..

1.    This child was born in Port Huron,Michigan USA,   and was estimated to have an IQ of 81. He had withdrawn from school after three months and was considered backward by school officials. The child enrolled two years late due to scarlet fever and respiratory infections,and he was going deaf. His emotional health was poor. He was stubborn and aloof,showing very little emotion. He liked mechanics,and he liked to play with fire,burning down his father’s barn. He showed some manual dexterity but used very poor grammar. However,he did want to be a scientist and a railroad mechanic.

Who was he? Thomas Edison,reputedly the greatest inventor of modern times.

2.    By the age of 10,both of his parents had died. He was raised reluctantly by an older brother who resented another mouth to feed. His wife died after 13 years of marriage. Of 20 children from two marriages,ten of them passed away while still infants. One died in his 20’s,and one was mentally deranged. Eventually,this outstanding musician went blind and was paralysed with a stroke. Did this man forsake faith in God?
Who was he? Johann Sebastian Bach,the greatest composer of religious music.

The interesting thing about all these men is the fact that they were all believers in God,they faced incredible adversity,and they all succeeded in life. Abraham Lincoln is known to be the greatest president up to this time. How is it that these believers faced down adversity and succeeded in life,and actually became the best in their given professions?

As believers,how can we face adversity and succeed? Rather than becoming defeated,the secret is in this wonderful book of James penned during a period of tremendous adversity. Peter Marshall describes the period like this:

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“They were thrown into prison and made the cell a pulpit and the dungeon a choir. Stoned,they rose from the dust bleeding and bruised but with a more convincing testimony. Wounded with whips,they praised God all the more. Nothing could stop them. The Romans made human torches of believers to light the arenas on their holidays,yet in death these Christian martyrs made converts through their strange preaching. Hunted and persecuted,thrown to the lions,tortured and killed,still the numbers who made the sign of the cross grew and grew.”
How did these early Christian believers facing adversity succeed and not become defeated? Hear the powerful words of James,pastor of the Jerusalem church:

James 1: 2-4  “Be glad even if you have a lot of trouble. You know that you learn to endure by having your faith tested. But you must learn to endure everything,so that you will be completely mature and not lacking in anything”.