The Northfield

  2535 Shore Road

  Northfield, NJ 08225


Church of Christ




Joy Under Pressure

"Consider it all joy, my brethren, when you encounter various trials, knowing that the testing of your faith produces endurance. And let endurance have its perfect result, so that you may be perfect and complete, lacking in nothing" (Jas.1:2-4).

You might noticed that the verses used for today's devotional are the same as those used yesterday. If you are really discerning, you may notice that a word or two are different because yesterday they were from the NIV and today they're from the NAS. The key word that has changed from yesterday to today is endurance instead of perseverance.... I think that the word trials that is used refers to anything one faces which may encourage that person to do ungodly things. From what I can gather, this Greek word may be considered differently depending on the context. An example might be trials that come from within as in I Tim.6:9. In these cases we tend to call them temptations... James tells us (1:14) that when one is tempted or tried, he is drawn away by his own desires. When temptations come from the outside (I Pet.4:12), we usually refer to them as trials. These trials may also come in the form of sickness, financial difficulties, or accidents. The ones that James addresses might actually be coming from within the church itself. OK... By now you're probably wondering when I'm going to address that "joy thing" found in the verses. From the outside, few of us would logically deduce that trials, temptations, health difficulties or accidents could possibly bring joy. Paradoxical though it seems to be, James urges his readers to consider it all joy when you encounter various trials... Evil stuff is not considered to be an occasion for joyousness, but here is the crux of it all. One may consider their trials to be joyous when those trials coax them into a closer partnership with God.... With the help of the Lord, Christians are able to turn evil into blessing, because God works His gracious will even though events are evil in themselves. Here is our great thought for the day... When the believer, in his goodness and innocence faces trials, he can enlist God in bringing forth goodness.... The endurance of trials may result in patience and perseverance. The end product of trials when received joyously is that Christians stand before God perfect, made complete by faith in Christ....

Have a wonderful day.... Do good and give God the credit.... Love mark Phil.4:11

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