Saturday, January 14, 2012

Joy in Trials?

     I was looking forward to Beth Moore's new Bible study on the book of James...but then I got my study guide and read this ~

"Count it all joy when you fall into various trials." James 1:2

      What? Is that what it really says, I'm to be joyful in the midst of trials? But trials are hard and I don't really like can I be joyful when I fall into them? I wasn't sure I wanted to go on. After all, if James starts his letter with these words what could possibly be next.

      I've been through a few trials lately and am actually in the middle of a couple at the moment. I can't say I have counted them all joy. But perhaps that is the very reason I may need this particular Bible study at this time in my life. God is good about giving us what we need when we need it, and I can plainly see that the joy has been missing from my trials. So I read further...

"knowing that the testing of your faith produces patience." v.3 it makes more sense. I can count it all joy when I fall into various trials BECAUSE when my faith is tested, it will produce patience. But it didn't stop there, it went on...

"But let patience have its perfect work, that you may be perfect and complete, lacking nothing." v.4

      Perfect and complete...lacking nothing? Wow, that's a tall order. No wonder it takes something hard like trials to fill it! I can see how faith and patience have worked together in the trials to strengthen my trust in God. When things get hard I pray, I cry, I ask God why, I question, I fight...then I remember...who He is, what He's done for me, what He can do...that He can do all things. Then my faith grows stronger, the trial that was once huge becomes very small and insignificant in comparison to who He is.

      I think it will take an entire life time to let patience have its perfect work. And for being perfect and complete, lacking nothing ~ that sounds like Jesus doesn't it? If the trials in my life make me more like Him, then they are all worth it and I truly can "count it all joy."

I think God is going to teach me a lot in the book of James!

Are you finding joy in your trials?

"Untested faith is unreliable." ~ Charles Stanley


  1. Ah, trials! It seems contradictory to count them as joy, doesn't it? But, God has proved James' words to me over and over! Through every trial in my life, God has increased my faith and given me patience. I know that He's not done with me, but I know He'll be with me through every trial I face...and that in itself is cause for joy!

    Blessings, Joan

  2. Sometimes, it's hard to see the good that comes after or even during trials, but knowing there is good is great comfort.

  3. There are so many things that are hard to understand. You did a very good job of explaining this subject. Trials - yes, everyone has them. Some more than others. God does know just what we need and how much we can handle.


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