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. . . . Blessed is the one who perseveres under trial because, having stood the test, that person will receive the crown of life that the Lord has promised to those who love him.
Find Joy in Trials
Dr. Wayne Dyer, a self-help author, once said: “A bar of iron costs $5, made into horseshoes its worth is $12, made into needles its worth is $3500, made into balance springs for watches, its worth is $300,000.” To be worth that much, iron must go through quite a trial by fire. The more it passes through the heat, is hammered and polished, the greater its value.
As a rule, we try to avoid going through the heat. We don’t like experiencing trials in our lives. But James, the half-brother of Jesus, challenges us to change our perspective. He says that God uses trials to make us better. In that sense, they are a blessing from God. Our gracious God has a good goal in allowing us to face all kinds of trials. Trials build and strengthen the character of our faith. The testing of our faith helps us to focus on the right things, eternal things.
The trials God allows us to face remind us that this is not our home. A better life now is not the goal. God has already prepared the best life for those who love him in the world to come. It is an eternal home with him that Jesus made possible for us by his life, death, and resurrection. He faced every trial common to humanity and persevered. And when he passed through God’s fiery wrath on the cross for our sin, he forged the crown of life for all who love him.
So, when God calls you to face all kinds of trials, don’t sigh and say, “Oh, boy.” Remember the goal that God has in store for you after you have passed through them, look up and say, “Oh, joy!”
Lord Jesus, help me to be faithful to you in trials so I may receive the crown of life you have prepared for me. Amen.