James 1:2-4 tells us this: "Consider it PURE joy when you face trials of various kinds, for you know that the testing of your faith produces perseverance. And let perseverance have its full effect, that you may be perfect and complete, lacking nothing."
Do I look at every circumstance that comes my way as a positive opportunity? Is each obastacle truly an opportunity in my eyes? It's so much easier to get beaten down and focus on the negative side of things, because if we are being honest, when trials come into our lives, it feels more like we are LOSING out, rather than gaining anything. When your husband loses his job, when your children get sick, when friends betray your trust, when things keep breaking in the house, when you discover a flat tire...but God tells us to consider all of these things PURE joy. See, our Heavenly Father accepts us just as we are, but He loves us too much to let us stay there. He desires that we be "complete, lacking NOTHING." When we think of that end result, it sounds really enticing, but the process to get to there isn't always easy. However, it's the perception we choose to have in the midst of the process that makes all of the difference.
In the movie, Pollyanna visits a man who has a bunch of crystals hanging around his house. Pollyanna is enthralled with how the prisms create rainbows against his walls when the light hits them. The man didn't think much of them, but Pollyanna talks him into stringing them up all over the house and they're astonished by the beauty that was created in the room by how the light caught the prisms and created rainbows everywhere. I think, sometimes, I feel like I have a lot of stuff just "hanging" around in my life that dosn't seem to have much use, but if I will allow God to shine His light on it, He's able to create something so beautiful from it!
How can I choose, today, to be thankful in all circumstances? How can I choose to look beyond the muck and the mire and see the beauty God is working to ufold? Do I truly believe that God's purpose for everything in my life is to allow me to be "complete, not lacking anything"? I so often want to fight that process, but my prayer today is that I would surrender to the way HE desires to work.
Anyone up for a game today??;-)