SERVANTS' MINISTRY, Inc.
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Causes of Hardships
James 1:1-8 James, a servant of God and of the Lord Jesus Christ, to the twelve tribes which are scattered abroad, greeting. 2 My brethren, count it all joy when ye fall into divers temptations; 3 Knowing this, that the trying of your faith worketh patience. 4 But let patience have her perfect work, that ye may be perfect and entire, wanting nothing. 5 If any of you lack wisdom, let him ask of God, that giveth to all men liberally, and upbraideth not; and it shall be given him. 6 But let him ask in faith, nothing wavering. For he that wavereth is like a wave of the sea driven with the wind and tossed. 7 For let not that man think that he shall receive any thing of the Lord. 8 A double minded man is unstable in all his ways. (KJV)
James 1:12 Blessed is the man that endureth temptation: for when he is tried, he shall receive the crown of life, which the Lord hath promised to them that love him. (KJV)
Every one of us experience painful or stressful hardships at times. We struggle with them physically, emotionally and spiritually. Not one of one has ever lived a life completely free from pain, uncertainty, stress, worry and trials. The Bible makes this point abundantly clear. Some of the greatest men who ever lived: Jesus, Abraham, Joseph, Moses, David, Job, Peter, Paul . . . all the heroes of Scripture are portrayed as men and women who, at one time or another, underwent trying times of hardship and heartache. In today’s times, God's servants are still undergoing hard times. For that reason, it is very important that you learn how to cope with these hard times in life.
James 1:2 My brethren, count it all joy when ye fall into divers temptations . . . is a rather short verse, but it contains wonderful insight into the problem of life's trials. The phrase when ye fall into divers temptations means when you run into various trials, includes some things that prove man's hardships are universal. First, it is significant that James uses the word "when." This defines the problem; undergoing trials is not a matter of IF but rather WHEN! Second, when he says that you will "fall into" misfortune, he is stating that difficulties may arise unexpectedly; there may be no time to prepare for these predicaments. Third, he uses the adjective "divers" to mean the many different, ever-changing, and often surprising forms in which testsings appear.
As you consider life's persistent difficulties, a common question is, Where do these hard times come from? The fact is, there are some specific sources of trials. The main cause is simply our making wrong decisions. Since we have a free will, it allows us to make our own choices. Sad to say, even the most devoted Christian will make mistakes when making decisions, and the result will be a period of hardship.
Another cause of trials is persecution by other people. This is surely an obstacle with which the early church was familiar. Writing to the suffering Christians scattered throughout the ancient world, Peter says: 1 Peter 3:14 But and if ye suffer for righteousness' sake, happy are ye: and be not afraid of their terror, neither be troubled; (KJV) . . . Whether persecution come because of your faith, or for some other reason, the sad fact of life is: the world is full of people who have the ability and desire to hurt you. This is definitely a test for Christians seeking to respond to their oppressors in a Christ-like manner.
A third source of trials is the fallen world in which we live. Sin has so saturated the Earth that God's original concept of paradise seems impossible. Tornadoes, earthquakes, floods, sickness, war, bloodshed and crime are all the results of sin's impact upon the world. Clearly, there is NO way to escape the trials that seem to appear out of nowhere.
It is NO surprise at all, that many trials often come straight from God’s enemy (and ours), the devil. Satan hates God, and hates all who go over to God’s side, and tries to find ways in which he can torment us. Each attempt he makes has just one purpose . . . to pull us away from God. This is where our free will sets in. Will we surrender to Satan’s temptation? OR, will we stand firm in our faith? It is OUR decision! Free will: (Mat.25:41-46; Lk.13:3; John 8:24; Acts 2:38; Rom.12:1; Eph.2:2,8-9; 4:28; 2 Thes.1:8-9; Jam.2:18; Rev.2:11; 20:14; 21:8)
A final source of trials is the Lord, which many people foolishly resist, because they believe that God would not do that because He wants only for them to have happiness. They are wrong in their belief because IF God loves you, He will chasten (chastise) you. If you are in disobedience to God, He absolutely chasten you, IF you are His TRUE child. Heb.12:5-6 And ye have forgotten the exhortation which speaketh unto you as unto children, My son, despise not thou the chastening of the Lord, nor faint when thou art rebuked of him: 6 For whom the Lord loveth he chasteneth, and scourgeth every son whom he receiveth. (KJV)
My friend, God is much more concerned with our maturity and development than He is our happiness. This is very hard for some people to accept, but our relationship with the Lord is far more important than our temporary well-being here on Earth.
There are many times that lessons can be learned only through hardship. Because of this, God does allow difficulties to come into our lives for His purposes. Finding God's reason for our suffering can be difficult, but when we consider our hardships from our Father’s eternal perspective, we can begin to understand them more clearly. The best starting point for understanding the reasoning behind our trials is to prayerfully consider their source. The better we understand where these problems come from, the better we will be able to work through them.
Anxieties, Hardships, Pain and Troubles,
Plague us in This Life on Earth
Trials in this Life on Earth
A Heart for God
Adversity, A Bridge to Paul
Adversity, A Bridge or a Burden
All People Are Called, Few Respond
Can I Win Over Drugs and Alcohol?
Causes of Hardships
Dealing With Anxiety
Describing a Heart For God
Faith, Different Stages
Faith, Progressing In
Follow God With Your Heart
God's Promises to the Persecuted
God Is Well Able
God of Promise
Hold Fast to the Bible
How to Maintain Hope In Adversity
Listening to God
Living Godly In An Ungodly World
Persecution of Christians
Reason For Persecution
Renewing of the Mind
Riches of God's Grace, A Treasure
Seeking God's Guidance
Seeking God, When He Cannot be Found
Seeking God, Today's Heresy
Seeking God, WHY Should I Seek God?
Temptation, God's Promise
Temptation, Guarding Against
Temptation, Preventing Backsliding
Temptation, Resisting Sin
Temptation, Responding To
Temptation, Satan's Goal
Testing the Faith
The Christian Life
Three Commands to the Wicked
Universalism and the World to Come
Waiting on God
Waiting on God, WHY Is It Wise?
Warnings in Romans Chapter 1