Posted by: The Simple Guy | November 24, 2010

I’m Thankful for . . . Trials?

In our home Bible study we started James last night.   The book starts out like this:

Jas 1:2 ESV
(2) Count it all joy, my brothers, when you meet trials of various kinds,

Now, if any of you read this post, you will understand that I feel I am on the front end of some trials.  As a matter of fact, with this in mind, I found myself wondering what we are getting into when we chose this book.


But let me go back a little further.  I have mentioned before that I have come to hold the opinion that the essence of sinful man is that we are not grateful.  We are not thankful.  We do not honor God as He should be honored, and we are not thankful – at least that is how Paul put it in Romans 1:21.

Rom 1:21 ESV
(21) For although they knew God, they did not honor him as God or give thanks to him, but they became futile in their thinking, and their foolish hearts were darkened.

Notice in both of these verses how it is a choice.  This isn’t about feelings, but about decisions.  We chose whether or not to honor God and be grateful, or give thanks.

So let me just take a minute to thank God for trials.  James says that the trying of my faith produces endurance, which will have the final effect on me of making me mature and complete.  He also says that if I lack wisdom, I am to ask without doubting, because God gives wisdom to all who ask.  Later in chapter 1 it says that every good and perfect gift comes from God, in whom there is no shifting shadow or variability.

I want to list some of the trials I am thankful for.

Dad has cancer.  I am so grateful that we have a reminder that life is short, and a living example of one who is finishing well.  Listening do Dad lately is so bittersweet.  He sees life so much more clearly now, and says what he sees.

If you have looked at the weather map, the weather is cold here.  dropped below 0 last night.  I am thankful for the cold weather.  It is giving Tyson a chance to be responsible, and me a chance to depend on him.  You know, when life is easy, I tend to do it all myself.

I am thankful for President Obama.  Really.  I have seen so many of God’s people look at their lives, and re focus their priorities as a result of the right’s political defeat 2 years ago.  We must put our hope in our Heavenly Father, not on our political candidate.  The message I received from scripture the night of his election is dear to me, and I would not trade it.

I am thankful for our struggling economy.  I have seen believers reach out and help each other when there were needs.  Often when the help wasn’t something that was easy to afford.  God is the provider.  I am not.  We who are blessed, are blessed so that we can be a blessing.  These words sound so simple, but the truth is so profound.  I am grateful that God has seen fit to help us see this truth.

So what are you thankful for?




  1. Brother, In answer to your question, I have to keep running back to the words of the song that you and I both posted some time ago, “All I have is Christ”. Without Him life would have no meaning or ultimate purpose, Without Him I would still be in mt sins and under God’s wrath and condemnation! Without Him, to whom would I turn?
    I am thankful for the One who has carried me every step of the way!!…….I am thankful for my God who made me and redeemed me, and who sustains me each day!!

    • Very true my brother.
      Where would we be without Him? He is our ultimate cause for gratitude, as well as the only One Who is truly worthy to receive it.
      Great to hear from you.

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