“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
We can’t escape trials. We can pout our way through life, resisting change, but life still happens. According to this verse, we’re to accept challenges with…pure joy? That seems a bit of a stretch, but that’s exactly what it says. The word pure implies not tainted with any falseness or pretense. Not with grumbling, fear, or resistance either. We’re to embrace joy, pure joy, and allow it to surface.
When we do this, we open ourselves wide to God. A shift takes place from wanting the trial to pass quickly to allowing the trial to refine us for a much higher purpose than the trial itself. Our trust meter goes up because we realize everything happens intentionally and know there is something to be gained from it. And then something amazing happens in our character. We grow. We get deeper relationships. We see beauty. It’s so much better than pouting.