James 1:2-3 Count it all joy, my brothers, when you meet trials of various kinds. For you know that the testing of your faith produces steadfastness.
Have you ever watched the cooking show Chopped? I recently discovered it is on Netflix and I am obsessed. The premise of the show is four cooks are each given a basket of random foods (octopus, coconut cookies, and purple cabbage for example) and challenged to create something delicious out of the ingredients. It’s a race against the clock and it makes for awesome television.
I started thinking today about how we are sometimes presented with a random set of items in our own lives. But instead of random food, we have trials, and we must figure out how to make do with what God has given us. Life is not always how we planned it. Problems in marriage or with children or with careers, sudden sickness, or the loss of loved ones, any of these trials can be thrown into the basket. Our challenge is to now take them and make something beautiful.
Man that’s a hard thing to do. Who wants to look at our trials as gifts? Yet, the Bible tells us to “count it all joy.” Because when we endure trials, and our faith is tested, we can produce a deep steadfastness in our faith.
Our love for the Lord is deepened when we decide to embrace all of the items in the basket.
So scoop them up, give them all to God, and make something truly marvelous.