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Read Introduction to James


“My brethren, count it all joy when you fall into various trials…”



The word “trial” means trying, testing, assaying, or proving. An athlete must test himself to be the best he can be. He pushes weights to optimize his physical strength. She runs to maximize her cardiovascular system. She puts her body to the test to get the most out of it. God puts us under severe strain to get the most out of us.


Most trials are not a mark of God’s disfavor but of His determination to mature us into the image of Christ.


Trails teach us to be faithful and live with integrity. They help us to depend on God.

Trials are not a mark of God’s disfavor but His interest in our development. Christians of the highest character go through deep waters. Deep waters produce character. Joseph’s attitude toward adversity was the acceptance of God’s plan in his life.

“But as for you, you meant evil against me; but God meant it for good, in order to bring it about as it is this day, to save many people alive” (Genesis 50:20).

Resentfulness, self-pity, and bitterness toward trial reveal a weak faith. The person who rests in the Lord during duress demonstrates a powerful faith and knows that God has a purpose.

“And we know that all things work together for good to those who love God, to those who are the called according to His purpose” (Romans 8:28).

God puts all trials into our lives to test us for His approval. Carrying the right attitude under duress demonstrates our confidence in God when things do not go our way. Confidence in God’s plan produces strong and mature believers. These are Christians who know that all trials are not a mark of God’s disapproval of them but evidence of the authenticity of their faith. How we react to trial shows how strong our faith really is.