Nov. 19, 2017
— LifeNotes —
• Count it all joy.
“My brethren, count it all joy when you fall into various trials.”
— James 1:2 NKJV
• We may not can control the situation but we can control how we respond. If we don’t plan a response, we’ll end up reacting out of our emotions and that won’t be joyful.
• Count it: “Think about it; make your mind up ahead of time that when trials come your way, you’re going to be joyful not because of them but in spite of them. That’s a decision we make up front, before we know how long the trial might last.
• When bad things happen, I look at it like this, “What’s the devil trying to do to me?” and “What’s God trying to teach me?”
• The trials don’t come from God, but He doesn’t waste anything. He’ll use what’s coming against us to develop what He wants in us.
• The devil is wanting us to say God’s not faithful; he wants us to give up or get all up in our feelings about something. God wants us to stand on His word and come out the other side of the trial better, kinder, and stronger.
Knowing that the testing of your faith produces patience.
— James 1:3 NKJV
• If you want to know what you really believe about God, you’ll find out in a trial. A test in school shows you what you know. This kind of test shows you something you need.
But let patience have its perfect work, that you may be perfect and complete, lacking nothing.
— James 1:4 NKJV
• We have to let patience work in our lives and that takes a while. Have you ever heard the prayer, “Lord give me patience and give it to me now!”? It doesn’t work like that.
• Patience is a fruit of the Spirit. It abides within us and when a trial comes our way, we have to let it out, just like joy. They work together in a trial to bring us out the other side. If we don’t let patience work, we shortchange the fruit of the Spirit and the maturity that comes with it.
• When you hold on to what you know to be true, that testing of your faith will produce patience and you become more Christ-like and more mature. The next trial won’t throw you like the last one did.
If any of you lacks wisdom, let him ask of God, who gives to all liberally and without reproach, and it will be given to him.
— James 1:5 NKJV
• Even when trials are beyond our control, we can still get wisdom on how to get out of the situation, get through a situation, or change a situation. Ask the Lord if there’s anything you need to know or do to get through this trial faster and better.
• Again, God doesn’t bring trials; life does, but God knows how to help us when they come. That’s why He tells us how to face it going in, make up our mind to be joyful knowing it’s going to pass and we’re going to be better if we choose to be.
• Remember the old saying, “if you’re willing to wait forever, it probably won’t take that long.” God wants us to outlast the trial and come out on the other side of it mature, complete, lacking nothing.
• God gives us the ability to patiently keep heading in the same direction when everything is trying to get you to quit.
• What we don’t do in a trial:
We don’t pretend like nothing is happening and grit our teeth and say everything’s great. Trials are facts; but we approach them with the truth of God’s Word.
We don’t complain. We may not like what we’re going through but the way out is not complaining. Complaining doesn’t lead to maturity. The scripture says, “Shout for joy!” We can take that 2 ways; shout for joy like, “Hallelujah!”, or shout for joy like, “Come on, Joy, I need you!” and joy will come and help you.
We don’t feel sorry for ourselves and think that nobody understands. There is One who always understands. Have a little talk with Jesus.
• When in a trial, don’t use denial.
• Complain and remain or shout and get out
• Don’t go off and whine; stay close to the Vine