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Thought for the Week
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February 27, 2018, 11:43 AM

James 1: 2-5 (KJV)


I had occasion recently to be able to participate with many of our brothers and sisters at church in cleaning up some of our landscaping.  In doing so, one of the jobs we did was taking up some large shrubs at the front of the church.  These shrubs were about 25 years old.  They all looked pretty much the same from the outside, some had grown a little larger than others, but all in all, pretty similar.  It wasn't until we pulled the shrubs up that I noticed something significantly different about a particular row of shrubs than the others.  While most of the shrubs gave some struggle while taking them up, so much so that each shrub in a row had to be taken up individually, this particular row of bushes all came up at one time with very little effort.  You see, underneath the soil was very damp. Evidently, this area holds a lot of water.  While the other shrubs still flourished and did very well, and on the outside appeared pretty much the same, this particular row had no need to get its roots down deep for water.  Thus, when time came, they just pulled right out of the ground with no fight whatsoever.  

James 1: 2-5 states, "My brethren, count it all joy when ye fall into divers temptations; Knowing this, that the trying of your faith worketh patience. But let patience have her perfect work, that ye may be perfect and entire, wanting nothing.  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."

Be joyous in time of trial, when things aren't going our way?  Yes!  Sometimes life is all about the way we look at it.  While I realize there are definitely times of sorrow in our lives and times we have no control of the circumstances.  If we really look at it, what circumstances do we really have control over?  Very little, I believe.  But we do have control over how we handle difficult times.  We can decide what to do when trials come our way.  Do we lean on our own understanding?  Verses four and five tell us exactly what we should do.  First, let patience have her perfect work.  God sent his own son into the world to die for you.  Do you think he did that in order to leave you alone?  We can have full faith that God is with us and may be allowing us to learn to lean a little closer to Him.  He may be allowing us to put our roots in a little deeper.  And the fifth verse says if we lack wisdom, ask of God!  How beautiful this is, to be able to go to the one who sent his son to die on the cross for us, turn to him, not the world, and the promise here is he will give to you liberally.  He may not ever reveal to us why something is going on, but I believe our roots can get a little deeper with every dry spell and trial, and our trials can bring us closer and closer (to Him) in our walk with God.

Bro. Chip Bishop


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