God gets us ready for things in ways that don’t always make sense to us, doesn’t He? I generally think that if I am going to do something – become a doctor, build a house – then I would study it and maybe even observe others who do it well. Then, I get better the more I do it.
God has a similar approach, but the book-learning is not generally His style. Occasionally, even the part about telling you what you’re preparing for is missing. It’s only when you’re in the middle of doing what you’ve been prepared for that you realize how well you have been prepared in the first place.
Generally, God moves away from the classroom and right into the experiential lab. It makes sense, doesn’t it? The best doctor can only be better once they experience illness and difficult treatment. Then, they not only treat a condition medically, but understand and help the patient get through it mentally. If we want to do the work of God – with the poor, with the homeless, with the hurting, with the sick – is it any wonder that He will place us in situations that help us to work with them from a place of understanding and compassion? It’s this understanding that helps us to rejoice in our sufferings and trials, knowing that God can transform them into something wonderful.