My Father in Heaven, how I fear your name!

James 1 (NKJV)

Somewhere along the way, I've come to a conclusion:

I struggle with placing my trust completely in God because I didn't completely trust my earthly parents.

My dad wasn't around, so I couldn't really count on him for much of anything except money here and there. He missed my confirmation, my high school graduation, my wedding, and my first child's baptism. He was very inaccessible, and I knew not to expect much from him.

My mother's struggles with bipolar personality disorder, untreated, taught me to really weigh my requests. Often, I had needs or desires that I never brought up for fear of blowing her good mood, or because I had no idea how she might respond.

So I learned to count on me. The things I couldn't provide for myself, well...they weren't that important, were they?

God is a loving father. He wants to dote on His children. He wants us to come to Him with our hurts, our joys, our fears, and our needs. And He sits and listens. Always.

I am working on this, and right now God is helping me "get it". I've been pondering the first chapter of James for quite a while now, really letting it bathe over me. And I have learned many important things about my walk, God's faithfulness and love for me, and what I need to change in my life.

Here's an overview of what I've gleaned:

v.2-4: God allows us to face trials so that we may be perfected/corrected and made whole (that's why we should count it joy; who doesn't want to be made whole?)

v.5: When we ask our Father for wisdom, He gives it freely and without fear of reproach (unlike my earthly parents); He especially likes when we ask for wisdom about our faults and character flaws

v.6: I must ask in faith, believing that God has my best interest in mind and He WILL give it to me as I've asked

v.13-15: God is not tempting me; my flesh is the issue--my desire to be in control just as I learned to rely on me as a child; my flesh flirts with temptation, and temptation sleeps with sin; sin parents death and separation from God

v.17: God gives me all the good things in my life; even this journey of becoming more than just One Wee Spark

v.19: Simple rules for interacting with others; how I need to remind myself of this EVERY day!

v.22: Faith and right living is not a studious thing; it's action.

v.23-25: this is why I need a supportive group around me; so I can see my reflection more clearly and not walk away, ignoring it

v.26: I can in three words or less make sure everyone around me knows how sinful, manipulative, and prideful I am; all these things are counter to the things God is and I long to be


I hope this helps some in your study/reflection. I'm sure I'll be simmering in it for the rest of my life!

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