Joy in Trials

Woman staring out into the water

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 NIV

James begins his letter by encouraging his brothers and sisters in Christ to find joy in their trials. The word consider tells us to move this discussion about trials out of our emotions and into our heads.

Stop and think about this for a minute. Trials are going to come. That is a fact of this life. We can’t waste our time trying to avoid them. So instead, let’s remember we have the ultimate victory in Christ. Nothing that happens on Earth will take away our heavenly reward and the joy we will have in heaven.

With Christ, the fruit of our trials can be growth, maturity, peace, and the fruit of the Spirit instead of despondency, discouragement, depression, and hopelessness. Ask God for wisdom for the next step. Draw close to Him. Let perseverance finish its work to increase your maturity. Take real steps of obedience and faith, because the key to joy is obedience.

Today's Prayer:

Lord, as hard as it is, help us to find joy in the difficult things that come our way, because we know You have given us the ultimate victory. In the process, we can become more like You. Amen.

Adapted from Strength & Grace: Daily Devotions for Caregivers, a new publication from Guideposts