There is a parable that tells of two godly old men who planted olive trees so that someday they could have olives to eat and have a supply of oil. As the first one planted his tree, he prayed: “Lord, it needs rain, that its tender roots may drink and swell. Please send gentle showers.” And the Lord sent gentle showers. “Lord,” he prayed again, “my tree needs warmth; please send sunshine.” And the Lord sent sunshine.” “Now send frost, Lord, to make its fibers tough.” And, behold, the little tree stood sparkling with frost.
But one evening it died. The next day he went to see his friend and found his tree growing well.
“I prayed for rain and sun and frost,” he said, “and my tree died.”
Then his friend said, “I entrusted my tree to God. God made it, He knows better than I what it needs. So I make no conditions, but simply pray, “Lord, send what it needs. Storm or sunshine, wind, rain, or frost, as Thou knowest what is best’; and behold, it grows well!”
So whatever God permits to come into your life, easy experiences or hard ones, joy or sorrow, you can be sure that God is permitting it so you can grow up in favor with God and with man.