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Pure Joy

'Joy' and 'trials'...Nobody would put those two words together. No one. But God did. I'm pretty sure He didn't mean for us to have some kind of abnormal robotic response of happiness when something unfortunate happens. Jesus wept and Jesus grieved. In fact, Matthew reports "Jesus said to Peter and the two sons of Zebedee, "My heart is so heavy with grief, I feel as if I am dying."

Notice that James uses the word "consider" - that means to mull over, to contemplate. Instead of being bitter and angry when we face a hardship, we are to think of how we are being strengthened, of how our faith is increasing. Why? Because we are trusting God to get us through.

Jesus is the prime example - the writer of Hebrews wrote this: "looking to Jesus, the founder and perfecter of our faith, who for the joy that was set before him endured the cross, despising the shame, and is seated at the right hand of the throne of God." 

The Cross before the Crown. No pain no gain. No guts no glory. Many common idioms reflect this concept. It's hard to remember this when you're going through something, but it's all in the mindset. Paul tells us that our minds are continually being transformed when we focus on Him. It's preparation for an automatic response to kick in - even as simple as "God, help me". That is faith. Trusting God in a trial. And there is joy in that!

Romans 15:13  "Now may the God of hope make you full of joy and peace through faith, so that all hope may be yours in the power of the Holy Spirit." 

Have a blessed day   💙

~ Bonnie  @blessedbeboutique



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