My brethren, count it all joy when ye fall into divers temptations–James 1:2
In the Greek, peirasmoi the word for temptation, means some type of difficulty or pressure in our lives. This can be from the world or from Satan. God uses these temptations to try and prove our faith, and help us gain more perseverance and character.
Joy in Trials
We should face our trials with joy. In Matthew 5:11-12 it says, “Blessed are ye, when men shall revile you, and persecute you and shall say all manner of evil against you falsely, for my sake. Rejoice, and be exceeding glad: for great is your reward in heaven: for so persecuted they the prophets which are before you.”
Many times we forget that our time here on earth is short, and it’s our time in eternity that matters. In verse 12 of James 1, James states what we receive for enduring our temptations: “Blessed is the man that endureth temptation: for when he is tried, he shall receive the crown of life, which the Lord hath promised to them that love him.” We always forget what we do and don’t do here on Earth gets rewarded in eternity.
Trying of Your Faith
James calls these trials a trying of your faith in verse 3. Trials are sometimes brought into our lives so that God can test how true our faith is. They indicate that God recognizes our faith and has confidence in our commitment to Him. The Bible nowhere says that trials in life are an indication that God is displeased with us. Can it be? Yes, but not every bad thing that happens is God being displeased with us. Many times we assume tough times are a punishment. If we are going through trials we need to pray to seek guidance if our trial is due to sin in our life or just a test.
It’s easy for us to praise God when everything is going well. How easy is it when things are not going well? When life is not going as well, and every day seems to have some trial or difficulty in it, it can be really hard to praise God. We get whiny and irritable. Those times of difficulty can be the moments of our greatest testimony if we handle the moment properly.
Take Home Message
Difficulty or trials make us stronger. They make us stronger in our everyday life and in our spiritual life. Difficult times bring us closer to God. We seek him when we’re not in a comfortable spot. As Matthew 5:12 points out, our rewards come in eternity.