Unlimited: Embrace Pure Joy
Nov 29, 2021 1122
Consider it pure joy, my brothers and sisters, whenever you face trials of many kinds (James 1:2, NIV).
What is pure joy for you? Is it a day at the beach? Is it breakfast in bed? Is it winning the lottery?
The Apostle James starts his letter with a really strange statement. You would expect him to tell his readers to be joyful when everything is going well because the Lord is blessing them. Not at all; instead he tells us to consider it pure joy when we face trouble and difficulty.
James says that “whenever” you are facing trials—not some of the trials, but all of them—you should count it not as a little bit of joy, but 100%, unadulterated, full-bottle joy!
Pure joy reflects the reality that we live in as citizens of the Kingdom of Heaven.
And the word “joy” in the Bible doesn’t mean a “grin-and-bear-it” kind of pious tolerance. It really does mean your “cup-runneth-over,” “jump-up-and-down,” “can’t-hide-it” kind of joy.
This kind of joy reflects the reality that we live in as citizens of the Kingdom of Heaven—the reality that all evil has been overcome, even death itself; the reality that we are not only accepted by God, but are his treasured children, forgiven and cherished. And whatever happens, that always remains true.
Embrace pure joy. Choose today to breathe the pure, sweet air of heaven, instead of the pollution that clouds the glory Christ has for us. – Eliezer Gonzalez
Reflection: The thought in this devotional – that whenever we face trials we should count them as pure joy – is very challenging. Where is the deficiency? Is it in our lack of faith in God, or in his lack of goodness?