Journal Entry ~ 08/12/18

Behold, we consider those blessed who remained steadfast. You have heard of the steadfastness of Job, and you have seen the purpose of the Lord, how the Lord is compassionate and merciful. - James 5:11

God blesses those who endure, not those who give up. Those who continue to take the punches of life, who continue to live through the heartache and disappointment, and continue look to Him for their peace and their strength. We are promised in this life, we will have trials. But we can also know true blessings from the Lord if we choose to keep our eyes fixed on Him. There will be days that knock the wind right out of us, but there will be more days when we feel His overwhelming sense of presence and comfort if we choose to remain steadfast in our focus on Him. The problem is that so many of us get caught up in the trials. We let them dictate our mood and our perspective on life. They dominate our thinking and we can’t move past them to enjoy the blessings He has bestowed on us. Our trials blind us to all the goodness that does exist in our life because we’re so hyper focused on our problems. Take your thoughts captive and choose to focus on the blessings He has given you rather than the trials in your life, and you will discover the blessings that come with endurance. 

James draws us back to the Old Testament again by reminding us of the story of Job. If you have not read through the story of Job, you should go do that now. His story is one we should all know well, and remind ourselves of when life seems challenging. I think on him often, and know God included his story in scripture as a reality check when I start complaining that my life is tough. Job was a blameless man, so the enemy specifically chose him to tempt. Satan thought if he brought trials into Job’s life, Job would curse God. Job endured trials upon trials that took all ten of his kids, his health, and his livestock. He was left but a shell of a man, and through the majority of the trials, kept his eyes fixed on God. At the end, Job questioned God in frustration, and God appeared before him. Job repented for questioning the sovereignty of God, and God blesses him more abundantly than he did before the trials. 

God does not bring trials into our lives, the broken world we live in bring trials. The fact that we live in a world full of sin is what brings the difficult trials we endure. But God uses every one of our trials to draw us closer to Him if we choose to see Him in the challenges of life. With those trials, He has brought us abundant blessings. Choose to fix your eyes on Him and the blessings He has given us, and you will find the strength to endure the challenges. 

Press on ~ you are loved 💗


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