I had a couple of very bad days on Friday and Saturday. The pain in my back can take my breath away sometimes, and put me on the floor. Not a happy place. I’m better today, but Terry and I both felt it was too soon for me to sit through the ride back and forth to church, and to sit during Sunday school and the morning service.
So I decided to have my own church. I opened my Bible to James, where I’m reading right now. Instead of reading just the designated passage, I decided to go back and read the whole book through.
James has always been a book that both convicts and blesses me. It gets right to the point, doesn’t it?
In the very first verse, James identifies himself as a slave of God. The meaning is clear. He does nothing without the Master’s approval and direction. That is how a slave behaves. He has no will of his own, but operates only on the authority of his owner.
Then, in the next few verses, he tells us to count as joy all the trials and temptations we experience in this life. Really? I’m supposed to look at this terrible pain in my back as a joy?
So I’m still thinking about that, and I’ve decided that James knew what he was talking about. There is no joy in the pain, believe me, but there is great joy in how much time I’ve been able to spend in the Word because I’m unable to do anything else.
There is also joy in knowing that I have friends and family who are praying for me.
And there is joy and great gratitude in the progress there has been in controlling chronic pain. I don’t like taking medication all the time, but I’m very thankful for the relief it gives me. Usually.
Well, that’s just skimming lightly over a few of the opening verses in the book of James. It’s rich, practical, and convicting. I recommend it 🙂