James 1:1-8 (NIV)
1 James, a servant of God and of the Lord Jesus Christ,
To the twelve tribes scattered among the nations:
Trials and Temptations
2 Consider it pure joy, my brothers and sisters,[a] whenever you face trials of many kinds, 3 because you know that the testing of your faith produces perseverance. 4 Let perseverance finish its work so that you may be mature and complete, not lacking anything. 5 If any of you lacks wisdom, you should ask God, who gives generously to all without finding fault, and it will be given to you. 6 But when you ask, you must believe and not doubt, because the one who doubts is like a wave of the sea, blown and tossed by the wind. 7 That person should not expect to receive anything from the Lord. 8 Such a person is double-minded and unstable in all they do.
Max Lucado writes the following in his bible study of James:
“Like many of the early church leaders, James served under the constant threat of persecution and violence. Both the Roman Empire and the Jewish religious leaders had reasons to persecute as many Christians as possible. To the former, Christians were troublemakers; to the latter they were blasphemers. James wrote to his brothers and sisters about the benefits that could result from hardship and the importance of living genuine lives of faith.”
Just as an exercise to build upon our faith, let us look at a couple of questions we can ask ourselves in consideration of the passage above.
- According to scripture, how are we to respond to hardships in our lives?
- What is the purpose of experiencing challenges?
- What is the purpose/benefit of developing perseverance in God’s word?
- In what ways do our hardships help us to mature in our faith?
- What kind of wisdom is James speaking of in verse 5?
If you’d like, you may answer these questions on your own, or you can share your thoughts by replying in the comments section below. It is important from time to time to explore the scriptures for deeper meaning and application to our lives.
May God guide us each day to a more enriched and meaningful faith in Him! Let us study His word regularly and pray to Him in every circumstance, not just when we experience adversity in our lives. Let us learn ways to share our faith with others in a most respectful way so that we may be more effective in planting seeds of faith for the Lord!
Refs: ~“Life Lessons With Max Lucado, 2006, Thomas Nelson, Inc.”~ Google~