The following passage is much loved by followers of Christ. If you are a believer in Jesus, you’ve probably read the following words before.
Today, let’s look at them from a slightly different angle.
Dear brothers and sisters, when troubles come your way, consider it an opportunity for great joy. For you know that when your faith is tested, your endurance has a chance to grow. So let it grow, for when your endurance is fully developed, you will be perfect and complete, needing nothing. (emphasis added)
—James 1:2-4 (NLT)
The word we’ve translated “Endurance” is the Greek word Hoop-om-on-ay. It is derived from the root words, Hoop-‘o and Men-‘o, which mean “under” and “remain” respectively.
Endurance, therefore, means to “remain under.”
The opposite of “remain under” is “get out.”
When God allows a trial in your life, it is His will for you to “remain under” it until it is finished. Don’t quit … don’t give up … don’t change jobs … don’t file for divorce … don’t look for the fastest way out.
Why? Because in the end, you will be perfect, complete, needing nothing.
God’s greatest blessings don’t come by delivering you FROM your trials, but by strengthening you THROUGH your trials.
What trial are you facing that you want to get out of? That trial will make you wrestle with one of the most important questions you’ll ever face:
Will I remain under or get out?
Your car blew up and you don’t have enough to replace it without a loan.
Will you remain under or get out? Will you be humble enough to ask friends to give you a ride, try to carpool with coworkers or ride the bus so you can save for a $2000 beater? Or will you buy a car with someone else’s money and pay them a stack of cash in interest over the next five years? That car you get with a loan may be great right now, but by the time you pay it off, it will most likely be the beater you are too proud to drive today.
Your marriage is miserable.
Your spouse has pushed you away. You don’t talk anymore unless you’re fighting. You don’t feel like you’re in love anymore. You have nothing in common except for your address. Will you remain under or get out? Divorce might release some immediate stress, but what about the holidays? What about the kids? How will divorce affect your friendships? How will your divorce make God feel?