Written by the struggling-to-keep-cool (in both senses) Robin.
I wonder what your first reaction is when you go through a hard time or temptation, it may not be prayer and almost certainly isn’t joy, but those are the things that Jesus’ half brother, James, tells us we can respond with in his handy letter about how we can live better as Christians. How can he say this? Well he tells us that through trails we can grow in our faith, by persevering, it’s a chance to grow, a challenge, it’s like when people say it’s “character building”, and this time it’s really true.
But if that’s a it hard to take, and I don’t blame you if it is, then I hope you’re encouraged by what he says next; that God will provide that which you need to get through something. The key to this, is trust, trust that God will deliver like He promises too, it’s like getting on a boat, you need to be totally sure it’ll float, you can’t have one foot on it and one foot on the shore!
The passage ends with one of the most beautiful things the Bible tells us, firstly that it is not God who tempts us, although we can grow through persevering through temptation, and secondly, that ALL good things come from God, all good things! Family, friends, music, clothes, art, food etc all gifts from God, because after all, He is our loving heavenly father.