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
We often associate the trials we experience in life as God punishing us for something wrong we did. Indeed, we have consequences to face for the things we do, but trials aren’t always God pouring out His wrath upon us. Sometimes the trials we face are God’s way of testing our faith. It is easy to praise Him in the good times, but what about in the storms? Will we still praise Him?
Last week, I experienced some crazy trials. It was difficult for me emotionally and by Friday, I was so overwhelmed, sad, betrayed, broken, weary, struck down, and at the end of my rope. I prayed and prayed and it was still raining on me. I knew that God was with me, but it was so hard to reach up to Him when I was in the middle of a storm. I knew I had to persevere through it but every time I would get up, I would get smacked down. But I still continued to pray and pray and pray as the rain poured down on me (boy…was that hard).
By Friday, I called on one of my prayer warriors to come along side me and pray. Just knowing someone else was praying for me, no questions asked, was comforting. I just kept thinking “Joy comes in the morning.” By my bedside that night, I prayed. For every negative thing that happened that week that broke me, I thanked God for it and thanked Him specifically for how it made me grow. I submitted to God, resisted the devil, and asked God to draw near to me because Satan had NO authority in my home! (See ya wouldn’t want to be ya!)
By morning, the storm cloud had dissipated, the sun was shining, and God delivered a big dose of JOY to my morning. My heart was healed, my home was back in order, and my chaotic JOYFull life was back in full swing. When I looked back on the week and pondered on the course of events, I can see that when I stepped out in faith to do what God called me to do, I experienced trials. That, my friends, is pure JOY!
Obedience to God + (Trials x Perseverance) = PURE JOY
It may sound crazy, but this equation seems to be my life. When I say “yes” to God, on my journey I experience crazy trials. But when I persevere through them, on the other end is PURE JOY! Through my trials, God has made me complete, not lacking anything. What a JOY it is to be doing God’s will and seeing God’s faithfulness when the enemy tries to steal, kill, and destroy. I love it when God shows up!
When you are in the midst of a storm, are you able to praise God through it? Do you go through it alone or do you ask others to pray for you? If you don’t have a prayer warrior standing in the gap for you, would you consider finding someone who will always be there for you for prayer, no questions asked?