Consider it pure joy, my brothers, whenever you face trials of many kinds, because you know that the testing of your faith develops perseverance. Perseverance must finish its work so that you may be mature and complete, not lacking anything.
The Christian faith provides the ability to look beyond the current set of circumstances to the good that will be. Jesus did this.
Let us fix our eyes on Jesus, the author and perfecter of our faith, who for the joy set before him endured the cross, scorning its shame, and sat down at the right hand of the throne of God.
Jesus endured the cross because His life was focused on the joy beyond it. The joy of doing His Father’s will and, I think, the joy of providing salvation for all of us who believe.
Life is hard. There are difficulties and various kinds of trials. It is so counter-intuitive… and counter-cultural to consider these trials as good. To have joy because of them… this is uniquely a God thing. The joy comes not in the difficulty itself – Christians are not masochistic. The joy comes in knowing that perseverance is being developed in me. Maturity is being banged out like an ironsmith bangs out an object on his anvil. Wisdom and completeness comes through the experiences of life.
Clearly, Father, You want to change my thinking and my spirit more than my circumstances. You are concerned more for my maturity as a disciple than for my temporary ease and comfort. And so You redeem all things for Your own purpose. No trial is wasted. You use it in my life. Thank You. Help me to consider these difficulties as pure joy! I yield to You, the King of heaven and the King of my heart, today.