On Sundays, I will be sharing a short devotional. I'm going to start in the book of James because that is where I am reading right now in my own personal devotions.
"James, a servant of God and of the Lord Jesus Christ, to the twelve tribes in the Dispersion: Greetings. Count it all joy, my brothers, when you meet trials of various kinds, for you know that testing produces steadfastness. And let steadfastness have its full effect that you may be perfect and complete, lacking in nothing."
Usually, our first thought when a trial comes along is something along the lines of: "Great. Now I'm suffering and I feel awful--God, why me?"
James is saying that we should REJOICE in these trials because they are good for us.
Trials are hard--but they always bring us closer to God. God gives us trials when we NEED them and when we are READY for them (Hebrews 12:10-11).
I don't know about you, but I'm not usually ready to suffer. But, we can take comfort in Romans 8:28--knowing that everything happens for a reason--and in Hebrews and James--knowing that suffering and trials are good for us in the long run.
To summarize: we should be joyful in suffering, knowing that it is for His glory and our benefit.
from Pasadena with love (& meditation),