Welcome to DAY 10 of our online Bible study on James!

Click HERE to download our 25-Day Reading Plan on James!

 


DAY 10

— Read: James 2:10-13

Several years ago I went through a long season of personal crises. I stopped bringing Jesus everything. I doubted His goodness and ability to ever make something of all the mess. I doubted His calling on my life and didn’t know what His purpose for my life looked like anymore.

I was numb and in disbelief. I began closing off parts of my heart to God and it eventually lead to not trusting Him with anything. Time apart from Him combined with heart wounds, disappointments, and lost hope led to making choices in my marriage that I never thought I would.

These were the times I should have come to Him the most but I stopped abiding in Him.

I began carrying the burdens of loss and confusion and tried to fill the emptiness myself. I resisted the rest and freedom that Jesus offers because I was so unhappy and had grown tired of waiting on things to change. Over a period of time I began to believe the lies of the enemy and culture around me. I stopped coming to the One who could still the raging waters and satisfy my soul.

One morning I came to the end of myself and cried out to God. In a pivotal encounter with the Father, I was rescued. My journey of redemption, healing, freedom, and the restoration of my marriage began.

Today God has fully restored my life, marriage, and family. We are stronger than ever and live freely and joyfully in His plans and purposes. But in the process of healing and restoration over the past few years, I have learned that God allows storms and suffering into our stories to grow our faith and redeem it for His glory.

God doesn’t cause the trials but He allows us to walk through them.

On Day 10 in the Word Writers James study guide, Denise says “Christianity is the great equalizer of people. We’re all lawbreakers. Every single one of us. My sin will be different from your sin, but we’re all sinners in need of mercy.”

James argues against showing favoritism and judging others according to their sin, economic status, practices. James’ letter is still relevant for us too. We are all sinners in need of a Savior. And He still calls for us, even when we’ve turned away.

As Christians we are saved by God’s grace through faith. But we are also required to obey Him.

His grace doesn’t cancel our duty to obey Him; it gives our obedience a new basis. The ways God asks us to live and the boundaries He has set in place are not meant to restrict us; rather, they are meant to give us freedom to fulfill His kingdom purposes in and through us. We serve an omniscient, sovereign, grace-giving, merciful God. His love is unending.

Our past never has to determine our future, because He is doing a new thing in and through us.


 

— Diving Deeper —

Why does James say mercy triumphs over judgment?

 

Share in the comments!

 

Holly Newton

Holly Newton is passionate about encouraging, equipping, and praying for women to live out God’s purposes and best plan for their lives. She is the visionary behind Exhale Women, a non-profit women’s ministry based in Franklin, Tennessee. She is a writer, mentor, speaker, and loves to create authentic, safe, life-giving community for women. Find more of Holly’s writing on her blog -- hollyanewton.com -- and read more about her ministry, Nashville retreats, and discover online devotionals at Exhalewomen.org.

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