James 1:2-4 says, "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. Let perseverance finish its work so that you may be mature and complete, not lacking anything."
I don't know about you, but I don't like trials. I don't like hearing about them, I don't like watching them on television (the courtroom kind), and I certainly don't like trials that involve me! However, I have found that it is in the trials of life that I find myself really searching and clinging to God. Whether it be a work-related trial, a family crisis trial, a health trial, or a relationship trial, I find myself looking for a way out. But maybe God doesn't want us out of the trial. I am finding, more often than not, that the trial is right where He wants me to be. It is in the trial that the real me surfaces...not the one who smiles and says, "Everything is fine"...not the one who sticks his chest out and chin up and says, "I got this!" No, the real me is the one who needs help. The real me is the one who needs wisdom that only comes from God. James 1:5 goes on to say, "If any of you lacks wisdom, you should ask God, who gives generously to all without finding fault, and it will be given to you." Instead of praying and asking God to take me out of the trial, maybe I should pray that He will grow me and show me through the trial. God loves His children, and I believe He will do anything and everything to help us become more like His perfect Son, Jesus. The Bible says He "gives generously to all without finding fault." The only way to truly persevere through the trial is to be in an intimate relationship with the One who controls the trial. The only way to have wisdom is to receive it as a gift from God. You can have joy, not just in the feel-good moments of life, but in every moment of life. Will you consider your trial pure joy?