It seems an odd and counter-intuitive thing doesn’t it to have joy in trials, yet that is the resolve James teaches Christians to have. In fact he says, “Consider it pure joy…” Is that even possible? Yes, because it’s in the context of pure joy, born out of a fully devoted life in Christ, that we have trials…trials are not our lot, Christ is our portion (Lam. 3)
There are no degrees of severity or seriousness or complexity of trial that determine whether we have joy, or not. No matter their source, or severity, James insists that we should respond with utter joy.
Why should we rejoice in the face of trials? Because the perseverance that is grown into our character is a crucial trait for our Christian walk. Maria Skobtsova, a prisoner at the Nazi concentration camp called Ravensbrück, despite the unimaginable horror, was able through the wisdom of God to see her situation not as misfortune, but as opportunity. Maria wrote: “I am Thy message, Lord. Throw me, like a blazing torch into the night, so that all may see and understand what it means to be Thy disciple”.
Self-Assess your JOY
KNOW that God is present
ACQUIRE the tools to navigate your trials
Ask God for WISDOM