Last Tuesday at Recharge we started our new summer series “The Summer of Your Life,” a study through the book of James, with a sermon called “Decisions…Decisions…” In this sermon we looked at James 1:12-15, where James is talking about two different types of trials we are going to face in our life. In verse 12 James uses the word trial, and this form of the word is referring to the hard times that we encounter in our lives that we cannot control. Even in these situations, as Christians we can still choose to be joyous. We choose to be joyous because of what our future holds, which James mentions at the end of verse 12.
God has promised the crown of life to those who love Him. It is interesting that this word love means to continue loving until the very end. No matter what trials we encounter that we cannot control, we must continue to love Christ until the very end, at which we will receive our crown of life. In verse 13 James switches gears to talking about the trials or temptations we face in our lives that are situations where we have a decision to make. When we make the wrong decision in these times, it is not God’s fault. As humans, we like to push the blame off on other people for things, and the same thing happens when we sin, we blame someone else and even God. James tells us that we cannot blame God for the wrong decisions we make because we make these decisions when we are drawn out by our own lusts and desires. When we give into these desires, we sin and sin is a slippery slope that leads to death. We however, can choose not to give into these temptations. as 1 Corinthians 10:13, in every temptation God gives a way to escape it.
We must purpose before the temptation even comes that we are going to rely on Christ strength when we are tempted. This summer, you are going to encounter many situations where you are going to have the temptation to do something wrong. The way of escape comes now when you decide and purpose in your heart that through God’s strength you are not going to give in. Make this the summer of your life by not giving into temptation, no matter how boring it may seem, it will be worth it in the end!