I've been studying the book of James for the last 2 weeks verse by verse. I love this book because it seriously challenges me to get outside my comfort zone, be challenged and grow! As hard as some of the words may be, even convicting...I find myself drawn to it. Even in the first chapter, James challenges us to listen to the word, but also to do what it says. Do you ever find it hard to do what it says? I do...for instance, in the beginning of the chapter he tells us to have pure joy whenever we face trials. Who does that? Every trial I've ever face, definitely was tough, hard and sometimes down right painful! Joyful is usually not the word I would pick to describe it. However, now that I'm a little bit older, I can look back over some of the trials I have faced and really see how God has changed me, stretched me, and grown me. That brings me pure joy because I know that is ultimately what God desires of me, but doesn't mean it was easy. I know that God has grown me more in the area of persevering and being steadfast, than any other. God has given me a firm belief in who He is, a determination...that even when it gets hard and I feel like I can't go any further, God continues to refine me and push me on. I desire to one day feel mature and complete, not lacking anything...but realize that it probably won't happen this side of heaven. However, I know that when I'm old and gray, I want to be able to look back and be amazed at what God did in my life. Hopefully, I will see that all that perseverance, struggles, tears and exhaustion turned into something wonderful for Him!
What has God been challenging you to do?
Is there any trial you are facing that's requiring a heavy dose of perseverance on your part?
Just know, you are not alone...I hope God's word will encourage you, like it has me!