"Consider it all joy, my brethren, when you encounter various trials, knowing that the testing of your faith produces endurance. And let endurance have a perfect result, so that you may be perfect and complete, lacking in nothing."Hard times seem to be surrounding me right now. There are hard times with our youth in the church. There are hard times with situations my work. My roommate is having hard times with her work, too. My sister is having hard relational/friendship times. Some of my students are enduring hard times with divorce or persecution. The American economy is having "hard times." The list continues.
MacArthur comments on the above verses (James 1:2-4): "The natural human response to trials is not to rejoice; therefore the believer must make a conscious commitment to face them with joy." Amen! Though times are hard or difficult or challenging, we have reason to rejoice. The battle belongs to the Lord. He has already conquered the grave and sin and eternal death. Therefore, rejoice! Rejoice that trials are in our life to grow us ever so close to our Creator and Savior. Hard times bring people together, as we suffer with one another in genuine fellowship. May God receive the glory He is due for bringing us through trials and hard times.