James 1:2-4,12 ESV
“Count it all joy, my brothers, when you meet trials of various kinds, for you know that the testing of your faith produces steadfastness. And let steadfastness have its full effect, that you may be perfect and complete, lacking in nothing.”
“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.”
If you are a human being living on this earth you are going to have trials. No one has it perfect all the time. But if you are a follower of Jesus Christ, those trials are for your good, and God has allowed them to work good in your life. For not one of us is perfect, and so we need working on. We need trials to test us in order to change us and to transform us and to mature us in our walks of faith and to make us more like Jesus.
Trials help to build character in us. They teach us patience and perseverance, and they humble us and sometimes correct us when we are wrong. And to have joy in our trials doesn’t mean we will never be sad or hurt or that we won’t cry or grieve. Crying is good for us. It lets out those emotions so that we don’t stuff them inside us. And we are to grieve, and there are things which should cause us to be sad. These are good.
To have joy in our trials means we accept them for what they are and that they are for our good and it means that we are able to see them from God’s perspective and that we can see the good that our Lord is doing in our lives because of our trials. And sometimes trials are preparing us and getting us ready for something in the future and we need them to help get us ready so that when something worse happens we can withstand the trials.
And those of us who love the Lord are those of us who are walking in obedience to him, not necessarily in sinless perfection, but in steady walks of obedience and in submission to him as Lord and not in sinful practices. And the Scriptures teach that salvation and eternal life are for those who are walking in obedience to the Lord and not in sin, and that is why this says that when we remain steadfast under trial, and we have stood the test, and we have not abandoned the faith, we will receive the crown of life.
[Matt 5:10-12; Matt 10:16-25; Matt 24:9-14; Lu 6:22-23; Lu 21:12-19; Jn 15:1-21; Jn 16:33; Ac 14:22; Rom 5:3-5; Phil 3:7-11; 1 Pet 1:6-7; 1 Pet 4:12-17; 1 Thess 3:1-5; Jas 1:2-4; 2 Co 1:3-11; Heb 12:3-12; Matt 7:21-23; Lu 9:23-26; Jn 6:35-58; Jn 15:1-11; Rom 1:18-32; Rom 2:6-8; Rom 6:1-23; Rom 8:1-14; 1 Co 6:9-10; 2 Co 5:10; Gal 5:16-21; Gal 6:7-8; Eph 5:3-6; Col 1:21-23; Col 3:5-11; 1 Jn 1:5-10; 1 Jn 2:3-6; 1 Jn 3:4-10; Heb 10:23-31; 1 Pet 1:17-21; Rev 21:8,27; Rev 22:14-15]
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We Have an Anchor
By Priscilla J. Owens, 1882
Music by William J. Kirkpatrick, 1882
Will your anchor hold in the storms of life,
When the clouds unfold their wings of strife?
When the strong tides lift and the cables strain,
Will your anchor drift, or firm remain?
It is safely moored, ’twill the storm withstand,
For ’tis well secured by the Savior’s hand;
And the cables, passed from His heart to mine,
Can defy that blast, through strength divine.
When our eyes behold through the gath’ring night
The city of gold, our harbor bright,
We shall anchor fast by the heav’nly shore,
With the storms all past forevermore.
We have an anchor that keeps the soul
Steadfast and sure while the billows roll,
Fastened to the Rock which cannot move,
Grounded firm and deep in the Savior’s love.
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