Summary: We all have trials and tribulations in life. God will help us through them, we are all but pieces of coal and with enough help from God we can be diamonds in His kingdom
Diamonds In The Rough
Text: James 1:1-12
Theme: Testing of our faith
Proposition: It’s a joyful thing to have our faith tested.
Interrogative: How is the testing of our faith joyful?
Transitional sentence: It is joyful because of the results of the testing.
When I was a boy growing up, in my pre-teen and teen years I used to look at the people that were going to church. I would see all the people going to church, they would be dressed in their nicest clothes and drive their nicest car to church every Sunday morning. I went to church when I was a boy too so I got to see those people up close and personal. I was just sure that their lives were great, that they had it all figured out, that they didn’t have a problem in the world. Little did I know then, I wasn’t a Christian then and what I thought was that if you were a Christian that you had everything all figured out. That if you were a Christian your life was great, that if you were a Christian you didn’t have any problems. I remember thinking to myself I wonder what it would be like to have a life like that. Not having a care in the world and life just goes on smoothly all of the time.
You would think with me thinking like that I would’ve become a Christian back then instead of when I did. I didn’t become a Christian until many years later, a couple of years after my wife and I got married. I had forgotten when I became a Christian about the way I thought when I was a boy. My thoughts when I became a Christian were about asking Jesus to be my Savior and being baptized for the forgiveness of my sins. It wasn’t until a few months after that I thought about the people I saw and knew when I was a kid. I thought about how I thought their lives were great and they didn’t have any troubles. I thought if they didn’t have any troubles back then way am I having so many now.
I know now that they did have problems. I remember being in and out of work, not having enough money to live on and having to depend on our parents for the support we needed. Just at the time when we would have money our car would break down or someone in the family would be sick. I can remember a time where months went by and I swore that my car knew when I got my paychecks, because it seemed to never fail that whenever I would get my check my car would break down. Every time I thought we would get ahead something would bring us back down.
I remember thinking why is my life this way, why do all these things happen to me? I must be doing something wrong, I must have sins in my life that I’m not confessing or I must not be confessing them right, I must be doing something wrong. I thought that since I was trying to live a good life that God would see me through the hard times and not let me down as He was back then. You see that’s what I thought back then, back then I was a Christian, but a baby Christian. I was a Christian that needed to mature in my faith. I was a Christian that was on fire for Christ, but I was a Christian of little and immature faith. What I couldn’t figure out then, I can figure out now. What I thought I was doing wrong then, turned out to be right for now. I have found out through the years since I have been a Christian that God works all things out for good for those that love Him. (Rom. 8:28). And as I look back on my life now I can see that God was working on me. He was allowing (not causing) these things to happen to me and my family to test my faith and make me stronger. I don’t think that God will stop testing me, because I don’t think that I’m as strong as I can be in my faith. I believe that I can grow a lot more in my faith and I don’t ever want to think that I have it all figured out and I’m as faithful as I can get. When trials and tribulations happen now I have a different attitude about them. Not that I did something wrong, but what is God preparing me for now. It seems odd to say, but I welcome the trials that Satan gives me, that God allows him to, because I know that if I endure, and stay steadfast I will become stronger in my faith and Satan will have less of an ability to turn me away and make me doubt God.