We all face trials in our life, and many times, we view these things as unbearable. In the book of James, we are encouraged that trials are opportunities for us to lean into Christ and grow closer to Him. So as Christians, how is it possible for us to view difficulties in a positive way?
This is a crucial part of our walk with God. If we look at trials expectantly, wanting to see God work, then He will reveal Himself to us and we will be able to see hard times as a part of Christ's plan for our life. Psalm 27:14 tells Christians to "wait for the Lord; be strong and take heart and wait for the Lord." It isn't easy to wait, but it is well worth the waiting to see how Jesus is working in our lives and in the lives of others. Seeking Jesus and looking for His will is extremely rewarding, so next time you're faced with a trial, look for the ways God can work through it.
Staying joyful is much harder than it sounds because, during hard times, joy seems to be the furthest thing from our minds. In James 1:2, though, James urges us to "Consider it pure joy, my brothers, whenever you face trials of many kinds." The joy which James refers to here is NOT happiness which is a common misconception within Christianity. Joy is not an emotion. Joy is something which occurs through consistently pursuing Jesus Christ. To find joy in the midst of your trials, you can worship, pray, confide in a trusted friend, read God's Word, and so much more. Draw near to Christ despite your difficulty.
Positivity is not easy, but complaining about your situation will never make it any better. Instead of focusing on all the negative parts of the difficulty you are facing, try to entrust these hard times to your Heavenly Father. Every time that you feel tempted to complain about your situation, combat it with gratitude. By replacing your negative attitude with an attitude of gratitude, trials will become much more bearable. Just as Philippians 4:4 says, "Rejoice in the Lord always. I will say it again: Rejoice!"
Whether it be a difficulty with family, an academic struggle, trouble with your job, a strained relationship, or any other hard time you face, don't forget God's goodness during this time. Use your hardship as an opportunity to grow closer to God, your Heavenly Father.