The Snowball of Suffering


I’ve been reading the book Stronger by Jim Daly, president of Focus on the Family. Throughout the book are stories of hope, people persevering through trials and suffering. He uses the analogy of a snowball and I thought I would just share that with you.

“Suffering produces perseverance; perseverance, character; and character, hope.” Romans 5:3-4

Consider, if you will, the snowball. Left by itself it doesn’t amount to much. It’s just a little round chunk of white frozen water. Yet place the snowball on the top of a steep hill on a snowy day, and things begin to change. If you invest some time rolling that snowball so it picks up snow and grows larger, you begin to create something big and heavy. If you invest even more time and energy (this is where perseverance comes in), you might get that ball rolling down the hill. And the longer it rolls, the faster it goes, the bigger it gets.

Now you’ve got something powerful… I believe that equation of suffering, which produces perseverance, which produces character, works in a similar fashion. Our willingness to trust and rely on the Lord in a time of trouble invites His power to work in our lives. The more we trust and depend on Him, the easier it becomes. As the Lord says, “My yoke is easy and My burden is light” (Matt 11:30).

Pretty soon our perseverance enables the Lord to add character to our “snowball” – and the more we persevere, the stronger we grow. We find ourselves rolling downhill toward a godly life. It still might be a bumpy ride, but the size and momentum of our snowball just about guarantees that as long as we are pursuing God’s will for our lives, nothing will stop us.


Lord help us persevere in our suffering so that You can produce character and hope in our lives. May we always keep our eyes fixed on You and pursue Your will for our lives.


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