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8-Great Principles For Embracing Trials-Part 2

8 Principles For Embracing Trials-Part 2

Humble yourselves in the sight of the Lord, and He will lift you up. James 4:10 (NKJV)

We're looking at a devotional series titled, "8-Principles for embracing trials," and it is based off the Scripture in James 1:2 where we are commanded to, "Count it all joy when you face various trials."  To be able to "Count it all joy," we must realize, God is allowing these trials as part of His way of shaping and transforming us to be like Christ, and to be properly prepared for Christian ministry.  

In Part 1, we looked our first principle for embracing trials, which is, "God is testing our faith."  So, let's take a look at our second principle for embracing trials.  

2.    God is humbling us:    When we are encountering difficulties through the various trials we face, we are humbled.  

Satan's fall was due to his pride, and this is one of the ways he seeks to get us to stumble as well, as he tempts us to take our eyes off of the Lord and put them upon ourselves.  We are continuously being tempted to think we have somehow achieved and/or obtained these things we have been blessed with in our life by our own abilities - things such as our provisions, our health, our education, and talents and just about anything else good.  When this happens, pride has crept into our lives and we have taken the credit for what we possess rather than giving the rightful glory to God.

We may be tested by going through the trial of an economic recession, or through the loss of a job, or maybe even a health issue coming upon us suddenly.  All of these types of trials should rightfully cause us to humbly come to the foot of the cross and seek the mercy and grace of our Heavenly Father - giving him all glory, honor and praise for His gracious and merciful provisions.   

The Apostle Paul was a gifted individual who accomplished much, including the writing of approximately 40% of the New Testament, and yet he too, was humbled by God, by what he called, "A thorn in the flesh."  We see this recorded in the Book of 2Corinthians.

And lest I should be exalted above measure by the abundance of the revelations, a thorn in the flesh was given to me, a messenger of Satan to buffet me, lest I be exalted above measure. 2Corinthians 12:7 (NKJV)

And James, brother of Jesus, said it best when he wrote, "Humble yourselves in the sight of the Lord, and He will lift you up." (James 4:10).   And to prove this very point, Jesus gave us a parable of two men - one humble and the other proud, to show what He thought of pride and humility.

 "Two men went up to the temple to pray, one a Pharisee and the other a tax collector. The Pharisee stood and prayed thus with himself, "God, I thank You that I am not like other men - extortioners, unjust, adulterers, or even as this tax collector.  I fast twice a week; I give tithes of all that I possess." And the tax collector, standing afar off, would not so much as raise his eyes to heaven, but beat his breast, saying, "God, be merciful to me a sinner!' I tell you, this man went down to his house justified rather than the other; for everyone who exalts himself will be humbled, and he who humbles himself will be exalted." Luke 18:9-14 (NKJV)

When we think somehow we've achieved some sort of level of spirituality by somehow doing something in, and of ourselves, we are setting ourselves up to be humbled.  

Q:    How do we achieve a Christ-like humbleness within our lives?

A:    By allowing Jesus to influence us - permeating every facet of our life - the way we think, the way we act, the things we participate in, and by allowing Him to have a greater degree of control of our total life.  

John the Baptist realized this and made this statement about what needed to happen within his own life.

He must increase, but I must decrease. John 3:30 (NKJV)

Hey Christian, I want to encourage you to embrace any trials you may face.  Acknowledge God's hand upon your life and continue to give Him all glory and honor for every good thing you're blessed with.  Choose to rebuke any thought sewing the seed of pride and self-reliance.  Continue to sincerely humble yourself when anyone seeks to lift you up, and God will put you up where you will shine brightly.  Knowing God's purpose for any trial face should always enable us to count it all joy.  

STUDY QUESTION: What can we learn with respect to being humble according to the Scriptures contained within this devotional?

PERSONAL INVENTORY: Do you give God all the Glory and credit for every good thing you possess?

APPLICATION: Seek to give all glory to God for every good thing in your life.  Remember, it is as Jesus said in John 15:5, "Without me, you can do nothing."

Father, Thank You for all provision.  Thank You for everything I've been given.  I give You all glory and honor for these things, and I acknowledge they're from You alone.  Father, help me to see any area where I may be thinking I've done something worthy of credit.  Speak to me in these areas so I may renounce any credit and defer it to You.  In Jesus precious name, amen...

Be Blessed, Pastor Scott

Copyright ©2017 by Pastor Scott Wright.
Unless otherwise indicated, Scripture taken from the New King James Version. Copyright 1982 by Thomas Nelson, Inc. Used by permission. All rights reserved. Bible text from the New King James Version is not to be reproduced in copies or otherwise by any means except as permitted in writing by Thomas Nelson, Inc., Attn: Bible Rights and Permissions, P.O. Box 141000, Nashville, TN 37214-1000