How odd are these storms today? It’s November, 70+ degrees, and there are tornado and thunderstorm warnings. It’s like April again. I wrote on the different severities of the storms of life last week then tonight as I get ready to write again it is actually storming. So I am going to talk a little more about storms (trials) and how we react to them.
At Bible study this week, we read the first few verses of James 1. It reads as follows:
James, a servant of God and of the Lord Jesus Christ, To the twelve tribes in the Dispersion: Greetings. Count it all joy, my brothers, when you meet trials of various kinds, for you know that the testing of your faith produces steadfastness. And let steadfastness have its full effect, that you may be perfect and complete, lacking in nothing. (James 1:1-4 ESV)
“Count it all joy when you meet trials of various kinds”. How many of us are excited about the bad stuff that happens to us? I know I am usually not. But as believers, James tells us that we should be. Why? Because the testing of our faith produces a closer bond with Jesus. And with that perfect relationship we will have all we need. Also notice the reference to different kinds of trials. It’s the same as we saw last week in Matthew where he speaks of wind, rain, and flood. So how do we accept our trials with joy? By giving them over to HIM. We must give it all to Jesus and let him handle it for us. It is so hard for us (guys especially) to swallow our pride and not try to handle everything on our own. My typical response to any difficulty is “I’m a man, I’m 30, I can handle this”. That sounds so ignorant. Why does my pride get in the way of my faith? And this is just not in the storms, but in the sunshine too.
This past Saturday while at the Clemson game, I can’t remember hearing more clearly from the Lord. He might as well have been in the seat beside me. He wasn’t there pulling for the Tigers (I think), He was there to teach me a lesson in patience and faith. I won’t go in to details but it was such a surreal moment. He showed me that His timing is better than my timing, trust Him, He has something better. When you give it all to Him it is such a peaceful and comforting place. The more you are willing to surrender, the closer you become to Him.
I am so thankful for the men I get to do life with and hear and learn from on a weekly basis. Each week, but this week especially, there stories really encourage me in my walk with Christ.
Wow, the rain is really pounding on the roof and windows now. The storms coming, but it’s going to be alright.