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. James 1:2-4
Well, doesn’t this verse just go against every human bone in our body and worldly perspective in our mind?
Sure does for me.
Be joyful in these trials of life because God is growing my faith and making more mature and complete? Lately, I’m thinking “No, thanks God. I like where I’m at, immature and incomplete. Just take away these struggles and I will be faithful. No perseverance trials needed for me…I’m good!”
Joyful is not the word I would use to describe my attitude most days. My husband accepted a new position at Concordia University in Seward, Nebraska. He commutes five days a week, leaving at 6:45am and returning at 7:00 pm. He makes it home just in time to put our four and two-year-old in their pajamas and tuck them in to bed.
Needless to say we don’t have much family time these days.
We’re trying to sell our home so we can relocate. There is a lot of interest but no serious buyers. Every weekend seems like a horse and pony show to clean and evacuate our home only to be told, “Your home is beautiful but we made an offer on a different house.” Humphf!
I feel like a hamster stuck on one of those wheels without an exit. I keep running, trying to maintain our household in Omaha and daily life for my children. Meanwhile, my absent husband is wearing out his own hamster wheel. (Literally. We just had 4 tires replaced on his car!)
Thanks to the snow, my husband was home for dinner and we ate together as a family. We were discussing our situation and other possible alternatives. My husband said, “I have to believe that God has a plan. I’m praying fervently that he will relieve my family of this stress and send us a buyer.”
I responded, “Well, just because you pray it, doesn’t mean He will answer it.”
Clearly my hard, cynical, and pessimistic self was speaking for me.
My four-year-old’s head popped up from her stroganoff and she blurted, “Uh… no Mom. God hears all our prayers and will answer them. You are wrong.”
Yes, sweetheart. I am wrong and you are so right.
1 John 5:14-15 boasts, This is the confidence we have in approaching God: that if we ask anything according to his will, he hears us. And if we know that he hears us—whatever we ask—we know that we have what we asked of him.
I only wish I knew what God was doing through all this. I do know He has plans to prosper and grow me, not to harm me; because, I believe we are acting according to His will for us. I am confident His plans far outmatch any I could dream up for myself.
I suppose while I wait, I can learn a thing or two from my daughter.
She certainly seems to be “mature and complete” enough for the both of us!