Trials & Tribulations
Testing of Your Faith JAMES 1:2 “Count it all joy, my brothers,[b] when you meet trials of various kinds, 3 for you know that the testing of your faith produces steadfastness. 4 And let steadfastness have its full effect, that you may be perfect and complete, lacking in nothing. 5 If any of you lacks wisdom, let him ask God, who gives generously to all without reproach, and it will be given him. 6 But let him ask in faith, with no doubting, for the one who doubts is like a wave of the sea that is driven and tossed by the wind. 7 For that person must not suppose that he will receive anything from the Lord; 8 he is a double-minded man, unstable in all his ways. 9 Let the lowly brother boast in his exaltation, 10 and the rich in his humiliation, because like a flower of the grass[c] he will pass away. 11 For the sun rises with its scorching heat and withers the grass; its flower falls, and its beauty perishes. So also will the rich man fade away in the midst of his pursuits. 12 Blessed is the man who remains steadfast under trial, for when he has stood the test he will receive the crown of life, which God has promised to those who love him. 13 Let no one say when he is tempted, “I am being tempted by God,” for God cannot be tempted with evil, and he himself tempts no one. 14 But each person is tempted when he is lured and enticed by his own desire. 15 Then desire when it has conceived gives birth to sin, and sin when it is fully grown brings forth death. 16 Do not be deceived, my beloved brothers. 17 Every good gift and every perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of lights with whom there is no variation or shadow due to change.[d] 18 Of his own will he brought us forth by the word of truth, that we should be a kind of firstfruits of his creatures.
Hearing and Doing the Word JAMES 1:19 Know this, my beloved brothers: let every person be quick to hear, slow to speak, slow to anger; 20 for the anger of man does not produce the righteousness of God. 21 Therefore put away all filthiness and rampant wickedness and receive with meekness the implanted word, which is able to save your souls. 22 But be doers of the word, and not hearers only, deceiving yourselves. 23 For if anyone is a hearer of the word and not a doer, he is like a man who looks intently at his natural face in a mirror. 24 For he looks at himself and goes away and at once forgets what he was like. 25 But the one who looks into the perfect law, the law of liberty, and perseveres, being no hearer who forgets but a doer who acts, he will be blessed in his doing. 26 If anyone thinks he is religious and does not bridle his tongue but deceives his heart, this person's religion is worthless. 27 Religion that is pure and undefiled before God, the Father, is this: to visit orphans and widows in their affliction, and to keep oneself unstained from the world.”
Sometimes life catches us in places where we can be rocked to our core. Sometimes life throws us a curve ball makes us question ourselves and makes us wonder what we really are trying to do. And sometimes life places us into valleys that we are not sure we can ever climb out of. Gary, Lance and I, are all in one of these phases of life right now as we speak. Gary dealing with very serious health issues, Lance struggling with his two children on a move away from their friends and the consequences that are resulting from that (along with teenage years) and myself with my own tribulations in my life.
In the Book of James, I am not sure about the rest of you, but for a very long time I struggled with the statement from James (The brother of Jesus) when he wrote, “Consider it pure joy…” through trials and tribulations? Seriously? How can someone truly say that without having a very wry smile on their face? How do any of us tell Gary not to worry about life threatening health and to trust God through it all? How can any of us tell Lance that he should keep praying and trusting God through this and to be an example for others (and his children to follow)? How can someone tell me that I cannot remove some circumstances in my life, that there has been put a thorn in my side that God has intended? To keep me humble for His grace is enough…?
Only through Scripture and prayer can our lives find a rhythm. In Romans 8, we read how God is sovereign. His plan is and should be our plan. Not our will be done, but His will be done. Our lives are but a mist, how we serve God and finish this life is what really matters. What attracted me to this website was the idea of leaving a legacy for my kids and future generations to follow. When my life fades and I meet my Savior, I would like my kids to say more than, “He was a nice dad.” I want them to own my faith even more than I do. I want them to know the comfort that I knew when my mom died a year ago this past March. I want them to have security that can only be given to us by a God who gave his son’s life for you and me.
Tomorrow is Father’s Day. It is one day out of the year that we celebrate fathers all around this country. For most, it is a great day to spend with the family and be loved by so many. For others it could be a painful day for either a bad relationship or a life gone by the wayside. Whatever the case, we (at Legacy Dad) want you to know that there is a Father in Heaven who knows what love is. A father who knows how to comfort, urge and encourage us to live a life worthy of Him. When we profess our belief in His Son and confess his name – we are a living temple to the living God. Our bodies are given the Holy Spirit.
This Father’s Day, think on these things and ponder God’s grace and mercy and provision for our lives. Rekindle your love, adoration and gratitude for a God who sent his only begotten Son for our sins. We are redeemed and loved. When we trust and our in obedience to His word and we walk by Faith, then we can know the things that God wants to know. We can feel the comfort that he and only he has for us.
To all our legacy dads out there, we want to wish you all a very Happy Fathers Day.
Serve and finish well!!!