But without faith it is impossible to please him: for he that cometh to God must believe that he is, and that he is a rewarder of them that diligently seek him. ~ Hebrews 11:6
James, the brother of Jesus (Matthew 13:55), became the leader of the church at Jerusalem soon after Jesus’ death and resurrection in 30AD (Acts 1:14 & 12:17). He was called—James the Righteous—by the early Christians. Paul referred to James as one of the pillars of the church (Galatians 2:9). A letter, known as the Letter of James, was written to the Jewish Christians who were under persecution and had been scattered amongst the nations (James 1:1). The letter advised on daily expectations for their attitudes, beliefs, and faith. This letter is the Book of James and is considered the earliest of all the New Testament writings, including the gospels.
In James Chapter 1:1–12, we are encouraged to consider four concepts (1) What to Remember? (2) What to Feel? (3) What to Be? and (4) What to Do? as Believers.
For just as those early Believers faced trials and various problems. . . God’s word. . . that James shared with them is still relevant for us today. We can be assured—problems, disappoints, troubles—which leads to stress will come for us all. However, we must keep in mind (1) it is normal for problems to happen, (2) problems come in different shapes and sizes, (3) problems are unpredictable, and (4) problems are purposeful.
It is because of the purpose. . . that we can take comfort and realize that problems do not have to destroy us. We can survive mundane distractions and teary-eyed disappointments. We can even overcome the most treacherous heartbreaking storms of life with our faith in Jesus Christ. Since, we know that (1) problems test our faith, (2) problems develop endurance, and (3) problems mature our character.
Therefore, we can with confidence. . .
- Rejoice! Not “For” the problem, but “IN” the problem. . . because we know God can bring good out of the worst situation! And everything works for our good. . .
- Ask for wisdom! If we make our request known, God will give wisdom abundantly.
- Relax! When we ask in sincere faith, without doubts, God hears us, and He will answer in due time. Thus, no need to worry. . . It’s already done. . .
- Embrace God’s promise! James 1:12 tells us, blessed is the man or woman who endures trials, because when he or she has stood the test, the crown of life—that God promised to those who love Him—await them.
Dear Heavenly Father, we come before you with a humble heart a willing mind to worship You and to receive your word. We glorify You. We are living in stressful times. We feel the dis-ease in the atmosphere all around us. We face divers’ problems and struggles—anxiety, depression, heartaches—distresses of this COVID-19 pandemic. But we will not fear, because we are assured in Your word that You have plans to prosper us and not to harm us, plans to give us hope and a future (Jeremiah 29:11). We will endeavor to be anxious for nothing, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present our requests to You. That You may grant us a faith that is not stressed by stress with an attitude of gratitude. In Jesus precious name. . . Amen.
God bless. . . I am Wiley’s granddaughter. . .