Consider it pure joy, my brothers and sisters, whenever you face trials of many kinds, because you know that the testing of your faith produces perseverance. Let perseverance finish its work so that you may be mature and complete, not lacking anything. James 1:2-4
Perseverance is the ability to endure. God uses trials to grow our attitude and ability to persevere. So, when we see trials on the horizon, we should consider it pure joy. Really? Yes, really. For those of us who have gone through difficult times with the abiding presence of God and witnessing His intervention, support and power, we feel closer than ever to Him. We discover something more of Jesus character.
How about me? Is my first reaction to impending trials – to rejoice? Sometimes, but not always. I find myself grumbling with lack of faith on some occasions. But other times, even with things like car problems, strained finances, etc. I approach the situation in prayer and joyful expectation that God will meet my needs. When family members get sick, I find it hard to consider it pure joy. But, once I engage in prayer, I usually find my role and I see God using me in important ways.
Lord, today is the day we gather together with all the believers. Oh, touch my heart. Build me up. Help me reach out and love others in Your name. Please draw my mom closer to You than ever before. Use my wife and Kasey as they sing to inspire others into passionate worship in song. Take the words of pastor Chuck and save many today.