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Testing Your Faith

James 1:2-8 (NLT)

Dear brothers and sisters, when troubles of any kind come your way, consider it an opportunity for great joy. For you know that when your faith is tested, your endurance has a chance to grow. So let it grow, for when your endurance is fully developed, you will be perfect and complete, needing nothing.

If you need wisdom, ask our generous God, and he will give it to you. He will not rebuke you for asking. But when you ask him, be sure that your faith is in God alone. Do not waver, for a person with divided loyalty is as unsettled as a wave of the sea that is blown and tossed by the wind. Such people should not expect to receive anything from the Lord. Their loyalty is divided between God and the world, and they are unstable in everything they do.


Life is a journey filled with peaks and valleys, joy and sorrow, triumphs and trials. James encourages us to approach trials with a perspective that might seem counterintuitive—joy. If you ask me, I rarely consider struggles “an opportunity for great joy.” I usually view my struggle the way I think most people do, as a huge bummer. How can we find joy in the midst of challenges?

The key lies in understanding the purpose behind the trials we face. James reminds us that trials are not meant to crush us, but to refine us. Like gold tested by fire, our faith is tested in the furnace of adversity. It's through these trials that perseverance is born—a steadfast spirit that withstands the storms of life.

Last summer, I was met with a trial that left me feeling not only a lack of joy, but also like I had been abandoned by God in my time of need. As I walked through that confusing season, God kindly reminded me that He was always walking with me, and slowly revealed each step He wanted me to take, as He wanted me to take it. I struggled to make it through that season of my life gracefully, but I clung to the promises of Jesus and allowed everything I needed to solely come from Him.

I look back on that season and I am able to smile. I can so clearly see God’s fingerprints on that time. He turned what felt hopeless and lonely into something that pointed directly to His goodness, and was ultimately for my good. In walking through difficulty, I was able to experience God in a whole new way. I had the opportunity to see His faithfulness in my life, and as a result, my faith saw dramatic increase.

As we endure, we grow. God's desire is for us to mature and become complete. This isn't a life free from challenges, but a life anchored in faith, wisdom, and trust in God. When trials come, James encourages us to turn to God in prayer, seeking wisdom. God generously provides the wisdom we need to navigate the complexities of life. However, we need to approach Him with unwavering faith. Doubt, like a turbulent sea, can toss us in different directions, making us unstable in our faith journey.

Embrace trials with joy, knowing they are opportunities for growth and refinement. In doing so, we cultivate a resilient faith that stands unshaken, anchored in the promises of a faithful God.

Action Steps

When in the middle of a trial, it can be hard to see God's hand. Take a moment to write down specifically what you need in this season, and with full faith, ask God to be your provider. Continue this practice, and watch expectantly as God comes through for you.

God, You are so good to me. Thank You for always showing up for me when I need it. I know without You, I have nothing. So, I pray now that my heart will constantly be reminded that You are the only one who can get me through each season of my life. Help me to see the ways You follow through on Your promises to me. I love You, Lord. Amen.

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