I know both how to be abased, and I know how to abound: every where and in all things I am instructed both to be full and to be hungry, both to abound and to suffer need.
Life is full of highs and lows, circumstances around us are constantly changing, one day everything is great and the next day we are in distress. Paul described it as abounding and being abased. When we abound we have more than enough, we are standing on the highest mountain top, but then Paul said he was abased, brought low, humbled by his situation. The very same person who had more than enough is now suffering need.
If I look at this verse in a season of life rather than the entirety of life I might miss the full impact of Paul's message. Sure there are specific trials which we will endure, but life in general is filled with highs and lows. The apostle said he had learned the lesson, the flow of life is up and down, and we should also learn the lesson. We will experience good days and bad days, mountain tops and valleys.
Don't resent the bad times because they bring sweetness to the good times. The rain makes us appreciate the sunshine, winter makes us desire spring time. We need both in life to grow and thrive. Too much sunshine makes a desert. Life is much like a roller coaster, hang on to Jesus for the ride, because in the next verse Paul said we can do all things through Christ!
Pastor Ken Smith