I am still slowly moving through James. Here's the verse I'm looking at:
James 1:2-3 "Count it all joy, my brothers, when you meet trials of various kinds, for you know that the testing of your faith produces steadfastness." (ESV)
Currently, I am examining the phrases, "testing of your faith" (narrowing in on "testing" or "trying" yesterday) and "produces steadfastness". It's really good. Trying to stay there and not get hurried. As I was studying today how the Lord tests the trustworthiness of our faith, I imagined a tree house. I imagined someone taking an enormous hammer to it and giving it severe blows just to make sure that it really was secure and would not fall. It helped me see the goodness of the Lord in giving us trials to see whether our faith really was sure. (He knows the weaknesses, but I don't...not without the testing, anyway.) What a tragedy it would be to come to the end of my life and not really know whether I had faith or whether I merely had a belief system that worked for me. What is faith unexercised? untried?