Consider it pure joy, my brothers and sisters, whenever you face trials of many kinds, because you know that the testing of your faith produces perseverance. – James 1:2-3
How does your faith grow? By using it. There are many ways we can exercise our faith, but we gain confidence in our faith when we go through difficult times.
Often Jesus asks us to respond differently to things than what we might imagine. When we are faced with troubles, at best we might respond with making up our minds to get through it. But Jesus says don’t just get through it but regard it as joyful. If the tough circumstances take away even our resolve and fill us with discouragement, Jesus tells us the same thing — be filled with joy. This is not how we feel like responding, and it is not how those around us respond.
But we can be filled with joy because we know that there is no situation that can take away God’s care for us. Troubles are temporary, circumstances are only for the moment — God’s love is everlasting. This is what our faith rests on, His promise of salvation and His assurance of love. Even the most overwhelming problem is no match for the imagination and power of God. We can have endurance because we know He can take us through. We can have patience because we know our future is set with Him. We can persevere because we know God is always present. And when we come out on the other side, we have proven our faith, we know that it is genuine.
Whatever we face, we can make it through with the grace and strength of our Father. We will be with Him forever in the presence of His love. That is pure joy!