Day 87: I trust you, Lord. Encouraged by your Word. James 1
Let’s jump right into the reading. James (who scholars say is the brother of Jesus) is writing to the 12 who were scattered all over to encourage them – the 12 disciples, the original 11 (they ‘voted’ to have a new one at the beginning of the book of Acts). How do we know this? Because James said it.
James, a servant of God and of the Lord Jesus Christ, to the twelve tribes which are scattered abroad, greeting. My brethren, count it all joy when ye fall into divers temptations; James 1:1-2
Right in the beginning, James’ letter shows that the scattered 12 needed encouragement because he wrote: “count it all joy”. Count what joy? What were they going through? Keep reading. They fell into all types of temptations. They had everything coming at them from left and right. They had everything imaginable thrown at them to turn them from the Gospel, but James wanted them to hold on to their faith that would grow as a result of their perseverance.
Satan is your number one enemy. He means nothing good for you. He is out there seeking whom he can devour (1 Peter 5:8). He is looking for whom he may tempt with their lusts? What are your lusts? Those things that your flesh want to do that go against the Word. James wanted them to know that this temptation was not from God, but from Satan, because God does not tempt. He encourages them to use God’s wisdom because using their own would lead to destruction. Remember, God gives us wisdom, but it’s our job to use His and not our own.
If any of you lack wisdom, let him ask of God, that giveth to all men liberally, and upbraideth not; and it shall be given him. James 1:5
The scattered 12 were wishy-washy. How do you know? Because James encouraged them to be of one mind: the mind of Christ.
But let him ask in faith, nothing wavering. For he that wavereth is like a wave of the sea driven with the wind and tossed. For let not that man think that he shall receive any thing of the Lord. A double minded man is unstable in all his ways. James 1:6-8
As you continue reading, you will see that James wanted them to be sure of their faith. He wanted them to recall what they had heard. He reminded them that if they only heard the word and didn’t live it, it was like looking in a mirror and forgetting who they were when they walked away. You have no clue who you are if you do not live what you have heard.
Be encouraged. Read these words and let them remind you that your crown will come in the next life. This life is temporary but the next one is for eternity. Your eternity is forever and that’s where your eyes should be.
And Jesus saith unto them, All ye shall be offended because of me this night: for it is written, I will smite the shepherd, and the sheep shall be scattered. Mark 14:27
Jesus told the 12 they would be scattered. He knew that YOU, His disciple of today, would be far from others who want to trust Him completely. He knew that your peers wouldn’t like YOU. He knew YOU would feel like you were in this on your own. He knew YOU would have temptations that would attempt to draw you away from Him. He knew all of this because in order to reach the places He wants disciples to reach, YOU have to be scattered. Far from those who are like you. YOU are one of a kind, but He also wanted YOU to be encouraged.
He loves you very much and He wants you to know that He knows it seems difficult sometimes but if you hold on and not succumb to the lusts of your flesh, you will receive the crown of life (James 1:15). You have to decide which one is more important to you: your lusts today or the crown of tomorrow.
Living for eternity,
Keiyia JOYet George
Trust Walk: Walking in His Steps coming soon!