A little clipping that crossed my desk a long time ago expresses an often overlooked opportunity, “Life on earth would not be worth much if every source of irritation were removed. Yet most of us rebel against the things that irritate us, and cause us heavy loss that ought to be rich gain.

We are told that the oyster is wiser; that when an irritating object, like a bit of sand, gets under the ‘mantle’ of his shell, he simply covers it with the most precious part of his being and makes a pearl out of it. The irritation that it was causing is stopped by encrusting it with the pearly formation. A true pearl is therefore simply a VICTORY over irritation. Every irritation that gets into our lives today is an opportunity for a pearl culture. The more irritations that the devil flings at us, the more pearls are possible. We need only to welcome them and cover them completely with love, that most precious part of us, and the irritation will be smothered out as the pearl comes into being. What a store of pearls we may have, if we will!”

Most of us will probably admit we don’t have as many pearls as we have the potential for. However, if we adopt the philosophy of the pearl we can have more.

In the Yellowstone Park area of America grows an unusual evergreen, the lodgepole pine. Like other pines, its cones must stay on the tree for years. Even when it falls off, they usually do not open. They only open when exposed to extreme heat. Forest fires often destroy great expanses of this beautiful country. At the same time the heat opens the cones of the lodgepole pine. They are most often the first tree to grow back in a fire-ravaged area. The seed of new life was just waiting for the right conditions.

If you are overreacting in rage to minor frustrations, reevaluate your current situation and priorities. Everyone becomes fed up with something, but a spiritually healthy person deals with it.

Irritations are annoying, unpleasant experiences absent from danger, such as a mosquito buzzing around, or even a gnat. Life is a sand trap filled with various daily irritations like: TYPING IN ALL CAPS before you realize it, trying to spread frozen butter on warm bread, new upgrades of familiar operating systems, watching the clerk at the post office count paperclips while the line grows longer, and a dentist who hums in your defenseless face. The list goes on.

Remember we’re all in the waiting business. How we wait on God makes all the difference. Waiting on the Lord and not running before Him is often difficult, but always advantageous. His flight doesn’t always take off on our time.

Therefore “…glory in tribulations, knowing that tribulation produces perseverance; and perseverance, character; and character, hope.” (Romans 5: 3, 4)

Make this, and every day a “pearly day”.