“My brethren, count it all joy when you fall into various trials, knowing that the testing of your faith produces patience. But let patience have its perfect work, that you may be perfect and complete, lacking nothing.” James 1:2-4 (NKJV)
The Message Bible Version:
Consider it a sheer gift, friends, when tests and challenges come at you from all sides. You know that under pressure, your faith-life is forced into the open and shows its true colors. So don’t try to get out of anything prematurely. Let it do its work so you become mature and well-developed, not deficient in any way.
KJV Dictionary Definition:
Trial – Any effort of exertion of strength for the purpose of ascertaining its effect, or what can be done.
We are all most likely in one (1) of the following categories:
- We are entering a trial
- In the middle of a trial
- Exiting a trial
If not now, one day we will all face a trial that will shake our faith. While we shouldn’t look for trials, anticipate their arrival. We shouldn’t be surprised.
1 Peter 4:12 (NLT) – Dear friends, don’t be surprised at the fiery trials you are going through, as if something strange were happening to you. Additionally, let’s look at verse 13 below:
Instead, be very glad—for these trials make you partners with Christ in his suffering, so that you will have the wonderful joy of seeing His glory when it is revealed to all the world.
Jesus above all others set the example:
Hebrews 12:2 – Looking to Jesus, the Founder and Perfecter of our faith, Who for the joy that was set before Him endured the cross, despising the shame, and is seated at the right hand of the throne of God.
It doesn’t change the fact, that it is not an easy scripture to live out.
- When life is going well, it’s easy to be joyful however; when all seems as if it’s falling apart around you, it’s harder to hold on to.
- Even so, know one thing, living James 1:2-4 is vital for the believer.
- Bottom line is we either trust God or we don’t.
Reasons for trials:
- Experience; suffering that puts strength, patience of faith to the test.
- Growth – We will not be the same person we were when we first entered the trial.
- Sometimes it’s because we’ve lost sight of Who our First Love is and He desires greatly that we return to Him. – Revelation 2:4
Now that we are in a trial, how do we respond? Do we fall apart? Question God?
At what point do we stop, reflect and see what God is trying to teach us? When do we let God take control?
We can resist the Lord, but we still have to walk through the trial. It is better to grow closer to Him through it.
What do trials produce? Trials produce:
- The Fruits of the Spirit
- Galatians 5:22 (NLT) But the Holy Spirit produces this kind of fruit in our lives: love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness
- Matthew 6:33 – But seek ye first the kingdom of God, and His righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you.
- A more intimate relationship with God
- Jeremiah 29:13 that if we seek Him, we will find Him, when we seek Him with all of our hearts.
- Trust in God
- Deuteronomy 31:6 – “Be strong and of good courage, do not fear nor be afraid of them; for the Lord your God, He isthe One who goes with you. He will not leave you nor forsake you.”
- Character – not a worldly character, but a Christ-like character
- Example – maybe before the trial you were short tempered, whereas now, you’re not.
*Trials prepare us for our ministry or the next season in life God wants to take us through. But we need to be refined.
1 Peter 1-6-9 says In this you greatly rejoice, though now for a little while, if need be, you have been grieved by various trials, 7 that the genuineness of your faith, being much more precious than gold that perishes, though it is tested by fire, may be found to praise, honor, and glory at the revelation of Jesus Christ, 8 whom having not seen, you love. Though now you do not see Him, yet believing, you rejoice with joy inexpressible and full of glory,9 receiving the end of your faith—the salvation of your souls.
Ways to count it joy in trials:
- Worship the Lord
- Acts 16:25-26 – But at midnight Paul and Silas were praying and singing hymns to God, and the prisoners were listening to them.26 Suddenly there was a great earthquake, so that the foundations of the prison were shaken; and immediately all the doors were opened and everyone’s chains were loosed.
- Renew your mind in the Word of God
- Romans 12:2 – And do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, that you may prove whatis that good and acceptable and perfect will of God.
- Allow the Holy Spirit to comfort you
- John 14:26 (AMP) But the Comforter (Counselor, Helper, Intercessor, Advocate, Strengthener, Standby), the Holy Spirit, Whom the Father will send in My name [in My place, to represent Me and act on My behalf], He will teach you all things. And He will cause you to recall (will remind you of, bring to your remembrance) everything I have told you.
- Speak God’s promises in His word over your situation.
Though your trial might mean you take it in the heel, your obedience means your adversary takes it in the head. Bob Sorge
Several things we can be sure of:
- The trial will not last forever because to everything there is a season, and a time to every purpose under the heaven. Ecclesiastes 3:1
- All things work together for the good of those who love God and are called according to His purpose – Romans 8:28.
- James 1:12 – Blessed is the man who remains steadfast under trial, for when he has stood the test he will receive the crown of life, which God has promised to those who love Him.
- We will have the experience to share our story with someone going through a similar situation.
- We will have confidence that they will overcome as we have.
- We will build them up in prayer, with words of encouragement.
- GOD REMAINS FAITHFUL WALKING INTO THE TRIAL, DURING AND AFTER YOUR TRIAL! PRAISE GOD!
Be blessed and stay encouraged! He will see you through!
In Christ’s Love,
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