During the past couple of weeks, we have been learning that even in the midst of all that seems bad, we can trust that God is up to something good.
We can try to make sense of our pain. But sometimes, it makes no sense.
We have a hard time trying to connect the dots. So what do you do when things don’t make sense and you’re having a hard time figuring things out? James 1:5 tells us to “ask for wisdom.”
If you lack wisdom, just ask God. He has promised to provide wisdom for those who seek it.
But James 1:6 goes on to say that there is a catch. When we ask, we “must believe and not doubt because he who doubts is like a wave of the sea, blown and tossed by the wind.”
You also have to believe and not doubt that God really will intervene in your situation.
When you are facing a struggle, and even when you are being pressed to give into temptation, you can ask for wisdom, and God will provide it.
All of us wrestle with temptation. It could be the temptation to lie, steal, cheat or do something we know we shouldn’t do.
When we are tempted, we sometimes begin to wonder if God is the one who set us up. But James assures us that is never the case (see James 1:13-14).
We should never blame God when we are tempted. Remember what Adam and Eve did in the garden of Eden? Adam and Eve ate from the tree God had clearly told them to avoid. Then God questioned Adam about what had happened.
Adam basically said, “God, it wasn’t my fault. Actually, it all started with you. It was the woman that you gave me.” Adam was indirectly blaming God for what had happened.
James makes it clear that whenever we give into temptation, it’s never God’s fault. Take responsibility. Some people say, “The devil made me do it.” The devil can’t make you do anything. You have a choice to make when it comes to temptation.
Unfortunately, many make the wrong decision, then look for someone to blame.
James wants us to know that we are not helpless, and we are certainly not victims.
We have the freedom to choose right, and with the freedom to choose right comes the possibility of choosing wrong.
The next time you are tempted, don’t cop out or make excuses. Take responsibility and admit that you are making a decision that may have eternal implications.
You may read Steve Greene’s blog at pastorgreene.wordpress.com or you can email him at email@example.com.