Beyond the Weekend

November 16 | Perspective

November 16, 2021


Consider it pure joy, my brothers and sisters, whenever you face trials of many kinds… James 1:2

Read: James 1:1-2
James 1


James understands the importance of joy in all kinds of difficult circumstances. He tells believers facing extreme challenges to “consider it pure joy,” which really means to choose joy. The joy James urges isn’t the emotion of happiness or based on circumstances, but a joy anchored in Jesus Christ. It’s not tied to external events that come and go but is rooted in the fixed and unchanging truth of who God is and what he is doing in the lives of believers during challenging situations.

Adversity comes in many different forms, whether internal struggles, external influences, or things that seem to happen at random. God can use each difficulty to help us grow closer to him if we turn to him. One way we can embrace joy in trials is through a habit of gratitude. It’s not that we are grateful that the situation happened, but we are thankful for what God is doing in us through it.

Rather than focusing on the problems—gratitude shifts our perspective, allowing us to see all God provides and produces in us through them. As we cooperate with God through our adversities, he grows something beautiful in us. Each expression of gratitude acknowledges that he is God and is good, even in this.


Memorize James 1:2 and repeat it throughout the day as you face difficult situations. Write out the verse and post it where you’ll see it often, or save it to your mobile device. As you recite the verse, ask God to help you choose his joy in your challenging situation.


Join us this year as we read through the New Testament.

Today’s reading is 1 Peter 5.

Download a printable PDF of the BTW week here.

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