Message for November 16, 2014 from Pastor Jerry

My brethren, count it all joy when you fall into various trails, knowing that the testing of your faith produces patience.  But let patience have its perfect work, that you may be perfect and complete, lacking nothing.” James 1:2-4(NKJV)

        How many of us enjoy the trials we face as a human on this planet?  They can be anything from oppression by people to bodily illness, mental and emotional stress, financial problems, or demonic attack.  The question is how can you count it all joy?  Is it, “Wow, I get to go through another trying situation.”  James is not telling us to be happy about what is happening to us but that we should be positive in our attitude about it.  Trials will either defeat you or make you stronger depending on how you react.

        We do not have to go around looking for trials but when they come they are a test of our faith.  Faith is not limited to keeping us out of trials but getting us through them as well.  Trials are a type of resistance and resistance is the means of developing strength.  All physical exercise works because it involves resistance.  Lifting weights produces bigger and stronger muscles by the principle of resistance.  It requires effort that brings pain to increase our strength.  That principle works in all areas of life.  Spiritual strength, mental toughness, and emotional stability come from overcoming trials (resistance) we encounter.

        You can count it all joy by believing you will come through the trial a more determined person with stronger faith.  Do not let trials defeat you and cause you to question the quality of your spiritual experience.  Persevere and continue pressing on until you are lacking nothing.  God said it and that means it will work if we do not lose heart.

          The proper attitude is not an emotional reaction but a

deliberate intelligent appraisal of the situation from God’s perspective.  Testing carries the idea of proving genuineness.

Trials serve as a discipline to purge faith of dross, stripping

away what is false.  Patience is not a passive resignation to adverse circumstances, but a positive steadfastness that bravely endures.  If you enjoy trials there is something wrong with you but if you believe you can endure you are reaching spiritual maturity.  Choose wisely how you react.

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