April 23, 2023: Count It All Joy
"For you know that when your faith is tested, your endurance has a chance to grow." (James 1:3, NLT)
The word used in this passage for 'testing' is the Greek word 'dokimion.' It is a unique word because it means to be under the watchful eye. For example, a coach oversees his players. He does so not for the purpose of pointing out what is wrong but for the purpose of making adjustments in his players so they will do better. We live our lives under the watchful eye of a very good heavenly Father. He does not watch over us to find things wrong so he can condemn us. He watches over us, with His watchful eye, to help us improve.
James is encouraging the church by letting her know that she lives under the watchful eye of the Father, who is helping to perfect and strengthen her faith. Our endurance grows as our faith is tested, evaluated, and shaped by the Father!
Endurance means to remain in place, not to be moved, to hold out, and to stand against opposition. It is not just patience. It is actively successful in resisting opposition. The word for endurance also implies a motivation that comes from within because of honor and not from without, like public opinion.
James says we are to count it all joy when we encounter trials of various kinds. He says this knowing we are under the eyes of a good heavenly Father and are motivated by the honor of serving and pleasing Him.
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