Consider it pure joy, my brothers, whenever you face trials of many kinds because you know that the testing of your faith develops perserverance.
When James wrote those words he wasn't just talking about cookies. I know that and you know that. But it struck home with me as I read those words this morning and here is why.
My husband, also a James, has a cookie exchange every year at this time. Today is his cookie exchange which means yesterday I was making no-bake cookies all day. Every good cook knows they have to taste each batch (OK, I made that up but that's what happens to me on cookie making day). So I fell into the cookie wagon. Having to make over 100 cookies meant a lot of batches and that meant I did a little tasting along the way. I also ate 2, just for the joy of eating them.
Usually, I eat a lot more than 2 cookies and sample each batch, this time I sampled the first and maybe one in the middle. What I mean by sample is that these cookies kind of crumble and someone has to eat the crumbles. As I was making them, I kept telling myself I don't need to sample, I don't need to eat a cookie from each batch. Now, I'll be honest James 1:2-3 never came to mind as I was cooking but I am so happy this morning that I preservered and didn't over eat and end up covered up in the cookie wagon. Oh I was in it, but I wasn't drowning in cookie and shame at having eaten so much of the sugary sweetness that is no-bake cookies!
I learned after reading James that I can restrict the amount of sweets I eat this year, and you can, too. I love that James says "consider it pure joy" He knew that if you face the trails (no matter what they are) and press through them using your GOD GIVEN will power, you will feel joy!
This Christmas, eat what you normally would but not in the amount that you normally would. You can resist the temptations of sweets and you will feel joy at the first of the year because you persevered!
As with each post, I pray that this one will be a help to you this Christmas season.