James 1v12 “God blesses those who patiently endure testing and temptation. Afterward, they will receive the Crown of Life that God promised to those who love Him.”
Temptations and trials are part of life. This verse tells us that. The key word of this verse is AFTERWARD. When we endure temptation and trials patiently afterward there is a reward.
The best way I can explain this verse is by using the analogy of NRL or AFL preseason training. James 1v12 could read like this for the professional sportsman… “You’ll be better off, if you endure the intense running, the onerous gym sessions, the uncompromising physical goals set by our trainers, the sacrifice of not eating sweet fatty processed and unhealthy food during pre-season. In July and August when the season is on the line and its cold and you feel spent, you will have reserves of energy, the ability to play with niggling injuries and the determination to play through to end of the season.”
It’s common knowledge that players who have not had full preseasons, struggle to perform that year, even the champions of the game if they haven’t completed preseason fail to perform at their usual levels.
When we endure temptation, making no provision for the flesh, when we are patient during the trials, we are toughening up our core. We are getting ourselves ready for the future God has planned for us. I’m sure as the players endure physical punishment in the blazing hot summer sun, they must wonder “why am I doing this?” but in the future months they are glad they endured it.
Let me encourage you to be a push through, resilient person. Take on the disciplines of prayer, bible reading and worship. There are times God would have you fast, or say no to something you’d like to do. There will be times He will call you to extended prayer or bible reading, or going the extra mile to help someone who may not even deserve it and forgive people.
God has a great future for you. Endure and be patient with now, and your future will be strong.
Much Love and Blessings
Ps Mark and Nina.