One evening, a church going man named Jim, was at a gas station. While there, he ran into his pastor. As they began talking, Jim decided to pour out his heart about the trails that he was going through. As you can imagine this was quite a lengthy conversation and the pastor could tell that Jim was really struggling. Towards the end of their conversation, Jim looked up at his pastor and said, “Pastor, it is enough to make a man lose his faith.” The pastor paused for minute looked into Jim’s eyes and said, “Jim, sounds like it is hard enough to make a man use his faith.” Trials are hard, that fact tends to draw people away from God. James 1 gives us a reason why we should actually look towards God during a trial. James 1:2-4 says, “Count it all joy, my brothers, when you meet trials of various kinds, for you know that the testing of your faith produces steadfastness. And let steadfastness have its full effect, that you may be perfect and complete, lacking in nothing.”

Let’s get the correct perspective on trials:

Trails are:

  1. Trails are inevitable - Just because we are Christians, doesn’t mean we are exempt

  2. Trials come in all shapes & sizes

  3. Trials are personal

  4. Trials are a test and have a purpose

  5. Trials cultivate character

Trials are not:

  • God abandoning me

  • God punishing you

  • God failing at being God

Trials are personal to your journey. They are a part of your story. That is why God wants to talk with you during YOUR trial. There is a word in this passage that I believe is often read over. The word is steadfastness. What is steadfastness? We do not often use that term anymore. Steadfastness is the quality of being resolutely or dutifully firm and unwavering. As men, we should long to be steadfast. If my kids one day describe me as steadfast, I will be ecstatic. We need to understand that trials are a process of God molding us. I encourage you this week to “let steadfastness have its full effect” on you. Be unwavering in your faith, be grounded, and do not be distracted by the trail. If your trail is small or big, stay steadfast in your faith.

-Grant Lockard

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