Trials In Life Are Inevitable

The book of James has become my favorite book to study. I was drawn to it again this morning when it popped up in my Bible study choices in the YouVersion app. Listening to Frances Chan talk about the scattering of the tribes during the persecution following the crucifixion of Jesus helped me to understand why they would be questioning their faith.

Looking through my Bible at the notes I’ve written in the margins and the underlining I’ve done throughout the book makes it evident I’ve heard more sermons on the book than I realized.

We all go through trials, valleys, dumpster fires in life. Whatever you want to call them, the anxiety and fear about how your going to handle them is all to familiar to all of us. Becoming a follower of Jesus never made anyone immune to trials. Don’t think that because something bad happens that it means God doesn’t love you or that he’s punishing you. Quite the opposite!

The testing helps make us stronger. Knowing that God loves you gives you the faith to persevere. By you going through the situation and learning you’ll be able to offer help to someone else in the future.

Maybe we don’t know the answers to all of our situations, but by asking God for wisdom (and knowing that he will provide it) he will provide the answers. It may be from a friend or family member, from a sermon you heard at church or online. Maybe you will read something or hear a snippet of conversation that provides your answer. Maybe you will hear that little whisper that provides what you need. God has many ways to communicate with us. But, it’s important that we believe the answer will be provided.

Perseverance during these trials is what is important, because this faith will bring the reward.

The notes in my Bible point out these key takeaways:

  • Trials are inevitable (1:2)
  • Trials have purpose (1:3)
  • Trials demand endurance (1:4a)
  • Trials produce growth (1:4b)

I love the story about how the silversmith heats the silver on a fire. The heat of the fire brings the impurities to the top and the silversmith removes the dross from the top and then he continues the process again and again until the silver is pure. Then he can look down and see his reflection. I picture this as the procedure God uses to remove impurities from our lives and our hearts. By the time he removes all the impurities God can look down and see that we have become a reflection of him. That’s what he wants us to be, kind of his ambassadors on earth, loving and serving others as his hands and feet.

The book of James is so full of wisdom that encourage us to live our lives according to the will of God. I think it’s worth reading again…

In Faith,

Pam

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