The Book of James has much to say about consistent Christian living. Keeping that in mind, when reading James chapter 1 we often tend to focus on James telling us to have joy in trials. That is vital in the midst of trials, but what stood out to me after reading this passage again last night was the ending of verse 12. James says, “Blessed is the one who perseveres under trial because, having stood the test, that person will receive the crown of life that the Lord has promised to those who love him.” Trials challenge our hearts devotion. I can say I love the Lord prior to a trial. But can the same be said both during and after a trial? What about you? Is your love devoted and unwavering to God regardless of the circumstances that surround you? Or have you allowed the circumstance to turn your sights away from fully loving Him. This is why James reminds us in 1:13 to refrain from a mindset that leans towards blaming God. Failure to make wise decisions, failure to choose joy, failure to persevere, are all characteristics of one who’s heart may not be fully devoted to the Lord. God tells us in Jeremiah 17:10 that “I the LORD search the heart and examine the mind, to reward each person according to their conduct, according to what their deeds deserve.” So back to James 1:12, James tells us in the middle of this verse that the one who’s love is consistent towards the Lord in all circumstances, “will receive the crown of life.” In trials He tests our genuine hearts devotion for Him. Therefore, allow me to encourage each of us to practice devoting our hearts to Him prior to, during, and after trials. By doing so, we can anticipate receiving such a promise from Him. I pray that each of us will willingly choose a devoted heart for the Lord and His ways each and every day of our lives.
Practicing His Presence,
Examples of a consistently devoted heart for the Lord:
Nate Smith is a college baseball and football coach, a husband, a father of 6 girls, grandpa to 3 granddaughters, a police chaplain, a pastor, and has a passion to see men grow in Christ.
#girldad including granddaughter