Joy In Misery For The Christian
by David J. Stewart | July 2019 | Finished December 2019
James 1:2-4, “My brethren, count it all joy when ye fall into divers temptations; Knowing this, that the trying of your faith worketh patience. But let patience have her perfect work, that ye may be perfect and entire, wanting nothing.”
FAITH WORKETH PATIENCE!!! I love our text passage of Scripture. I have been a born-again Christian now for 39 years! I'll be 53, Lord willing, in March of 2020. Wow! Where did my life go? When you're a teenager, those teen years span one-third of your life, so they stand out and have great meaning; but when you get to be my age, 5 years only span one-tenth of your life, and they pass like clouds on a windy day! In my soul, I still feel like I'm 15 years old. I heard Pastor Jack Hyles say in a sermon that us older folks still see ourselves as teenagers, but teenagers view us as dinosaurs! That is true. I don't feel old, and I still plan to roll my window down and blast my music when I'm 80 years old, God willing, if I live that long. Philippians 1:21, “For to me to live is Christ, and to die is gain.”
The Bible is such an amazing Book because our God is such an amazing God! James 1:2-4, “My brethren, count it all joy when ye fall into divers temptations; Knowing this, that the trying of your faith worketh patience. But let patience have her perfect work, that ye may be perfect and entire, wanting nothing.” This passage of Scripture is literally telling us to be cheerful in our troubles, burdens and heartaches, knowing that God is still on His throne! The TRIAL (or testing) of our FAITH WORKETH PATIENCE! The greater your problems in life, the greater your faith should be! The dying world has no faith in God. Jesus said in Mark 11:22b, “HAVE FAITH IN GOD”! You will never know down here that Christ is all you need until Christ is all you have left. Pastor Jack Hyles put it this way, in the following classic sermons...
“Enjoy Your Troubles While You Can” (MP3, Dr. Jack Hyles; Rough times in the will of God are best times!)
“Learn To Enjoy Where You Are, While You're On Your Way To Where You Are Going” (Brother Hyles)
My apartment floods every time it rains. I vacuumed up 10 gallons of water a couple weeks ago during a rainy weekend. When typhoon Mangkhut came through last year, with a foam mop I sopped-up 45 gallons of water (that's before I figured out I could just vacuum up the water). I was working on my ministry website one night, and heard a rat clawing his way through my back door. I went to Home Depot and bought a piece of wood and a can of foam, filling the hole and sealing the door shut. I have a 5-gallon bucket in my downstairs restroom to catch water, that floods from the roof when it rains heavy. Due to a leaking foundation, when it rains persistently glue seeps up through the edges of each of the tiles; so I bought three rolls of clear masking tape to seal the glue from getting all over the place. My ceiling light fell and crashed to the floor a couple weeks ago, scaring my half to death. I PRAISE THE LORD FOR A ROOF OVER MY HEAD! Check this out! I am so very berry cherry merry blessed of God, I begin to cry when I think about it! God is so good ladies and gentlemen!! GOD IS AWESOME!!! ...
Psalms 107:1-2, “O give thanks unto the LORD, for he is good: for his mercy endureth for ever. Let the redeemed of the LORD say so, whom he hath redeemed from the hand of the enemy;”
Psalms 106:1-3, “Praise ye the LORD. O give thanks unto the LORD; for he is good: for his mercy endureth for ever. Who can utter the mighty acts of the LORD? who can shew forth all his praise? Blessed are they that keep judgment, and he that doeth righteousness at all times.”
Lord willing, I may have a new place to live soon, but I have to wait to see. I befriended an obese man in his 70's in 2017 while walking one day. I felt compassion on him, and shared with him how I had lost 70 pounds in just 4 months. We became casual friends. I later met his sister, who is married and in her 60's. I shared the Gospel with both of them, but they are loyal Catholics. They are islanders. Today, when I went walking at sunrise, she said her sister has a small apartment for rent, which is perfect for me, since I live alone. I told her I am very interested and gave her my contact information. One day at a time, we'll see if anyone contacts me. I have been praying much lately for others, and my neighbours, and myself last, asking God to help show me where to go from here in my troubled life. GOD IS FAITHFUL!!!
Power Through Prayer (a life-changing .PDF book by Pastor E.M. Bounds, 1835-1913)
Faith Worketh Patience
I am very expressive with my feelings, which is how God made me. That is why I love music. My constant toothache-like neck pain (stenosis and radiculitis) gets me down, but I am so thankful and blessed not to have the health afflictions that so many people have. We are all so undeserving of God's love, goodness and mercy. I have been praying much lately. James 5:13a, “Is any among you afflicted? let him pray...”
Kindly, my regular web visitors know that I have poured out my heart recently with my feelings in love for the Harvest Baptist Church on Guam, and a young woman that I love. My heart hurts thinking about fellow professed Christians that don't want me. I say that kindly and respectfully. I love them unconditionally and have no ill-will toward any of them, God knows my heart. I pray for them each day in love, truly. Christmas is a lonely time, and I live alone, which makes it tougher; so I've been playing my Hawaiian Steel Guitar (my music website) this week. I like playing along with this nice song I found, “My Yellow Ginger Lei.”
I would never ever intentionally want to hurt anybody's feelings, God knows my spirit. I only withdraw at times, like a turtle, to protect my own heart. Proverb 4:23, “Keep thy heart with all diligence; for out of it are the issues of life.” By the way, that is what a wife does—she protects her man's heart! A man is the strength of a marriage; and his wife is the heart. That is why God created Eve from the rib of Adam, because the function of the ribs is to protect the heart! A wife ought to be the nearest and dearest thing to her husband's heart, for she is as his heart. Humbly, I don't claim to be a good Christian. In fact, I feel like the worst (and so should you if you are close to our holy God)! I am praying for God's help and will concerning moving. One day at a time! GOD IS FAITHFUL AND I TRUST HIM WITH ALL MY LIFE!!!
Onward my fine non-feathered friend! FAITH WORKETH PATIENCE!!! Luke 8:15, “But that on the good ground are they, which in an honest and good heart, having heard the word, keep it, and bring forth fruit with patience.” I became curious about the meaning of the word “PATIENCE” in the preceding Scripture passages, which according to James Strong is the Greek word hupomonē, meaning: “From G5278; cheerful (or hopeful) endurance, constancy: - enduring, patience, patient continuance (waiting).” That is very interesting. The same exact Greek word for “PATIENCE” is used for both passages of Scripture in Luke 8:15 and James 1:2-4. The word means more than to wait, but to do it with cheerful and hopeful expectation, knowing that that “all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to his purpose” (Romans 8:28b).
THE TRIAL OF OUR FAITH as believers tests (worketh) our faith. Faith is like film, it develops in the dark! While driving, I once noticed a sign in front of a church, which read: “A FAITH MUST BE TESTED!” That truth has stuck with me over the years. I greatly pondered the statement's meaning. The irritating thought occurred to me, that unsaved people suffer the same afflictions, problems and burdens as do Christian; so how can a person's faith be tested, if they HAVE NO FAITH? Then it dawned on me that believers choose to HAVE FAITH IN GOD despite their afflictions, problems and burdens. So having all these bad things (and good things too by the way) TEST a believer's faith! The greatest faith a man can have is to continue praying and living for the Lord, when it seems like God has abandoned him in his hour of need.
“The thing that will reveal your faith
is praying when no answer comes. That's the supreme test.”
—Brother Lester Roloff, from the helpful sermon titled, Something Everybody Can Do.
Patience is hopeful endurance! Patience is not just waiting for something or someone, it is HOW WE BEHAVE WHILE WAITING! The reason why we can have such hopeful patience is because GOD IS FAITHFUL! 1st Corinthians 1:9, “God is faithful, by whom ye were called unto the fellowship of his Son Jesus Christ our Lord.” Amen! Every day of this miserable earthly existence of bodily pain, heartache of soul, frustration of life, loneliness, and enduring hardships, is ONE DAY LESS until we are in Heaven with the dear Savior!
What saith the Scripture? Romans 15:4, “For whatsoever things were written aforetime were written for our learning, that we through patience and comfort of the scriptures might have hope. Now the God of patience and consolation grant you to be likeminded one toward another according to Christ Jesus: That ye may with one mind and one mouth glorify God, even the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ.” God is very patient!
“Good character is not formed in a week or a month. It is created little by little, day by day. Protracted and patient effort is needed to develop good character.” —Heraclitus of Ephesus (535-475 BC)
Luke 8:15 teaches that we should wait with hopeful endurance, while we continue to preach the Gospel to the lost. If you are a soulwinner, then you know the frustration of witnessing to family, coworkers, friends and strangers who don't seem to be interested. Jude 1:22, “And of some have compassion, making a difference.” There have been many times when I witnessed to someone, where it seemed like they were listening, but then they refused to get saved. And there were other times when I thought my words were falling on deaf ears, but they were taking in every word, and did get saved. The point being is that you never know what a person is thinking. Don't be afraid to witness to people. There are Christians in all walks of life. Just witness the Gospel to everyone! Mark 16:15, “And he said unto them, Go ye into all the world, and preach the gospel to every creature.” I have known Christian men who targeted their soulwinning efforts primarily toward Jews, celebrities and wealthy people, but the Bible commands us to preach the Gospel “TO EVERY CREATURE.” That doesn't mean to preach to your dog or cat, but to every human being, even the lowest and most despicable among us. Romans 2:11, “For there is no respect of persons with God.”
“Our patience will achieve more than our force.” —Edmund Burke (1729-1797)
Likewise in James 1:2-4 we learn that with the same type of enduring patience, as Christian believers we ought to maintain a cheerful joy through life's suffering, hardships, health afflictions, loss and heartaches. The Bible tells us why we should be cheerful. James 1:2-4, “My brethren, count it all joy when ye fall into divers temptations; Knowing this, that the trying of your faith worketh patience. But let patience have her perfect work, that ye may be perfect and entire, wanting nothing.” According to James Strong, the word “joy” here is the Greek word χαρά, meaning: “From G5463; cheerfulness, that is, calm delight: - gladness.” The words that follow the “-” (hyphen symbol) are other words in the New Testament which are translated from the same Greek word. So in another Bible passage this Greek word is rendered as GLADNESS. This knowledge helps to understand the proper meaning of a particular word. Words are very important, and their proper meaning.
“We could never learn to be brave and patient, if there were only joy in the world.” —Helen Keller (1880-1968)
Be of Good Cheer!
“BE OF GOOD CHEER,” Oh Christian! That is exactly what our dear Lord exclaimed in John 16:33b. We have the hopeful expectation BY FAITH that things will ultimately improve, life will eventually get better, and our days of misery and suffering on earth are numbered. Did you know that suffering is as much a part of the Christian's life as salvation? Philippians 1:29, “For unto you it is given in the behalf of Christ, not only to believe on him, but also to suffer for his sake;” When we suffer, we suffer with our dear Savior, heirs together of ALL THINGS! Romans 8:17, “And if children, then heirs; heirs of God, and joint-heirs with Christ; if so be that we suffer with him, that we may be also glorified together.” Romans 8:32, “He that spared not his own Son, but delivered him up for us all, how shall he not with him also freely give us all things?” Oh, it is wonderful to be a Christian!!! BY FAITH, a Christian can be cheerful in suffering, in rejection by peers, in sorrow from loneliness, from bodily afflictions due to poor health, and from all that life can throw at us!! THANK YOU LORD FOR YOUR BLESSINGS ON ME!!!
Let me preach a bit against sin here. We are now living in a wicked, ungodly, untoward, ungrateful society in the United States! I am disturbed when I see young women adorned with tattoos (tramp stamps), which are marks of worldliness. I don't care if you got a tattoo for a loved one who died, tattoos are worldly! If you already have one, I would never deliberately hurt your feelings; what's done is done! I am preaching to those of you who still have your untarnished Birthday Suit...lol! Your “Birthday Suit” is the suit you were born with (i.e., your body). I think the most beautiful women are plain gals who wear no makeup, no tattoos, no fake implants, no plastic surgery; just a wonderful woman! Granted, a little paint on the old barn never hurt anything, but some women look like a Tammy Faye Bakker clown! Just like cooking a great meal, the key to using spices or makeup is in moderation. Whether spices or makeup, the purpose of their use is to compliment, not dominate. Those ugly tattoos don't come off!!! Call me old-fashioned, I don't care; God made the human body the exact way He wanted it, unmarked by man's art! There is nothing as ugly to me as a 50 year old woman covered in green tattoo ink, looking like a sailor.
Americans have lost respect for the sacredness of life, marriage, bedroom and the human body; evidenced by the evils of abortion, public nudity, filthy television, tattoos and an epidemic of fornication! The average American young woman today is a bar-hopping, boozing, feminist, slutty, fornicator! Having “a relationship” today is merely a clever way of diminishing the awfulness of sin! Someone needs to call a whore a WHORE! When a young woman says: “I'm not in a relationship right now,” what she actually means is: “I've temporarily quit my whoring around!” You know it is true!!! I say that kindly with God's love, as a King James Bible-preacher! America's pulpits are dry, dead and void today of tough Bible-preaching. We need a whole new breed of Spirit-filled preachers in America, weak men who live on their knees in prayer, reviving the fiery preaching of EVANGELIST BILLY SUNDAY (1862-1935)...
By the way, Pastor Jack Hyles met Helen Thompson Sunday (aka, “Ma Sunday,” 1868-1957). May I say, young ladies, GET MARRIED before giving some bum your most prized possession—your virtue! It is so tragic, but true, that women today are as mere fire-hydrants for men who are filthy dogs!!!
The only thing uglier to me than a tattooed woman is a woman who doesn't smile. A person's smile speaks much concerning their spiritual condition. I smile everywhere I go when I meet people, because I have the joy of the Lord in my soul. I CHOOSE TO THINK ABOUT GOD'S LOVE TOWARD ALL HUMANITY!!! If you think hate, you will hate; if you think love, you will love! I control my thought life, as the Holy Bible teaches, by yielding my thoughts to Christ. 2nd Corinthians 10:5-6, “Casting down imaginations, and every high thing that exalteth itself against the knowledge of God, and bringing into captivity every thought to the obedience of Christ; And having in a readiness to revenge all disobedience, when your obedience is fulfilled.” This is not thought-control, it is walking in the Holy Spirit (Galatians 5:22-25).
Why in the world would God put the fate of keeping salvation in the hands of sinners like us. That's like hiring a blind person to be a taxi driver and then firing them when they have a wreck. OF COURSE that's going to happen! Yet, God has entrusted believers with 'THE GOSPEL,' to preach to the lost world.
Love is the Greatest
Life is not made by the dreams that we dream, but by the choices that we make. Life is simply a series of personal choices. Our choices define who we are. Never reject those who love, care and try to reach out to you, because one day you'll realize you lost the moon while counting the stars!
To fall in love is by chance,
To love is a choice;
To fall out of love is a choice too,
You are free to choose, but you are not free from the consequences of your choices.
Sometimes we create our own heartbreaks through expectations. God knows that I have often done that! Never chase love, affection or attention. If it isn't given freely by another person, it isn't worth having. Pastor Jack Hyles taught me that you don't seek happiness in life; you simply do your duty, and along the way happiness will come find you. Proverb 3:13, “Happy is the man that findeth wisdom, and the man that getteth understanding.” Proverb 28:14, “Happy is the man that feareth [God] alway: but he that hardeneth his heart shall fall into mischief.”
Never apologize for having high standards. People who really want to be in your life will rise up to them. Stand up for what is right even if you're standing alone!
Never blame anyone in your life.
Good people give you happiness.
Bad people give you experience.
The worst people give you a lesson.
And the best people give you memories.
Everybody you have ever met in your life was brought to you for a reason.
I have come to understand that we do not love people because they are beautiful, but people become beautiful because we love them. Jesus said in Luke 12:34, “For where your treasure is, there will your heart be also.” The more that I pray for my neighbours, the more I love them, because I am investing my time and heart into them. In effect, they are my treasure. My web visitors, in whom I have poured my heart, soul and time for the past 17 years, are MY TREASURE!!! Jesus said WHERE YOUR TREASURE IS, THERE WILL YOUR HEART BE ALSO!!!
We do not love people because they are perfect, but love propels us to see them as perfect. I love the Gospel hymn: “HE LOOKED BEYOND MY FAULT, AND SAW MY NEED.” Love changes the way we view everything in this life. It compels us to think different, talk different, act different and live different. There is no pain that love cannot heal, no obstacle that it cannot overcome, no weakness that it cannot strengthen, no darkness that it cannot lighten up, no shortcoming that it cannot overlook, no wrong that it cannot right, and no broken heart that it cannot mend. GOD IS LOVE!!! The more Christ-like we become, the more loving we are. The world does not really understand the real meaning of love because they do not know the One Who is Love.
May we all love God and others, every single day of our lives, and not just once in a year at Christmas time. “Christmas 365 Days A Year” (Pastor Jack Hyles). Micah 7:18, “Who is a God like unto thee, that pardoneth iniquity, and passeth by the transgression of the remnant of his heritage? he retaineth not his anger for ever, because he delighteth in mercy.” Jesus is precious!!!
We Are Already On the Winning Side in Christ Jesus
I love you dear friend, and there's absolutely nothing you can do about it! Ha, ha! I love you, yes I do, you lucky dog you! Okay, I'm getting crazy! Too late, I know! I passed sane a long time ago...lol. You have to be a little crazy in this world, to keep from losing your mind!
We are already on the WINNING SIDE in Christ Jesus!!! ...
Romans 8:31-37, “What shall we then say to these things? If God be for us, who can be against us? He that spared not his own Son, but delivered him up for us all, how shall he not with him also freely give us all things? Who shall lay any thing to the charge of God's elect? It is God that justifieth. Who is he that condemneth? It is Christ that died, yea rather, that is risen again, who is even at the right hand of God, who also maketh intercession for us. Who shall separate us from the love of Christ? shall tribulation, or distress, or persecution, or famine, or nakedness, or peril, or sword? As it is written, For thy sake we are killed all the day long; we are accounted as sheep for the slaughter. Nay, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him that loved us.”
I challenge and encourage you dear reader to get into the inspired Word of God. I am right now listening to Alexander Scourby read II Samuel. I listened to I Samuel yesterday, and part of the New Testament from 1st Corinthians. I have been thinking about a precious truth I heard yesterday, echoing in my mind from 1st Corinthians 1:9b, “God is faithful...” The world just doesn't know what they are missing in Jesus Christ! (1st Corinthians 2:9-10). I am miserable in numerous ways in my earthly life, but I enjoy God's presence continually, and have peace like a river, and rejoice with joy unspeakable knowing that my name is written in Heaven in the Lamb's Book of Life! YET BELIEVING, YE REJOICE WITH JOY UNSPEAKABLE!!! Thank you for reading my heartfelt words.
“Faith is the only righteous thing that I can do!”
—Pastor Jack Hyles, a quote from the MP3 sermon titled: “God's Reversal Of Psalm 51”
1st Corinthians 16:24, “My love be with you all in Christ Jesus. Amen.”
END OF ARTICLE
BELIEVE “THE GOSPEL” 2B SAVED!
Confession Is Never A Requirement For Salvation
'The Gospel' In Just One Minute (by Pastor Max D. Younce)
“As a blind man has no idea of colors, so we have no idea of the manner
which the all-wise God perceives and understands all things.” —Isaac Newton (1642-1727)
Another Gospel Which Is Not Another (a red-hot MP3 by Dr. Curtis Hutson exposing Lordship Salvation)
“If you have to look at
your life to prove that you are saved, it proves that you're not!”
—Pastor Ralph Yankee Arnold; an excellent quote from the awesome YouTube sermon titled, “Why Lordship Salvation is WRONG! | MP3.”