Saturday, November 7, 2015

Path to Being Complete

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.  ~ James 1:2-4
Every time I read this, I sort of chuckle at the sheer craziness of this idea and how impossibly hard it is!

Consider it pure joy... whenever you face trials of many kinds...

Pure joy -- I think deliriously happy, elated, ecstatic, on cloud nine...

Trials of many kinds -- This is clearly speaking of all situations that do not make us happy, the big and the small ones. Problems, arguments, weaknesses, insults, persecution, hardships, difficulties, calamities, tragedies, inconveniences... A disagreement with a spouse, tsunami, traffic causing tardiness for a job, house burns, rainy weather for a picnic, foreclosure, the store is out of what you need, losing child in car wreck, burning dinner, rape, root canal, spouse loses limb, kids miss naps, car gets broken into, nausea, repeating requests, robbery, dropping things, cancer, stains not coming out of clothes, tornado, accidentally cutting finger, foreclosure, mosquito bite, losing job, milk spoils, can't pay water bill, shirt rips, watching parents murdered, tracking in mud, white blouse comes out of wash pink, ISIS attacks... basically, anything that does not go according to your plans or causes stress! {I know some things we control and are caused by our own mistakes. We can learn from them but do so joyfully instead of grumbling under our breaths with a frown and frustration.}

So, when trials (frustrating or traumatic) come my way, I am to be ecstatic??!!?!?! Yeah, c-r-a-z-y!

Not ecstatic over what happened, but incredibly delighted to get the opportunity to grow -- in grace, faith, perseverance, maturity, character... to be like Christ!

Confession: I have less trouble handling big problems than I do the little, daily frustrations. It's strange. But, with each failed reaction, I know that other opportunities are coming and I trust that His Spirit is helping me to desire change and to do it (Phil. 2:13).

I've probably written similar posts before, but I really needed to be "preached" to about this again.

Wanting to consider trials of many kinds a pure joy,