. . .count it all joy when ye fall into divers temptations. . . James 1:2 (KJV)
Knowing this, that the trying of your faith worketh patience. James 1:3 (KJV)
Temptations are not hard to find; patience is. The ESV uses “steadfastness,” rather than “patience;” I prefer steadfastness because it seems to me to imply more fruitfulness, in the sense that Paul invokes in proclaiming to his Philippian adherents that he will “press toward the mark, for the prize of the high calling of God in Christ Jesus” (Phil. 3:14, KJV). Somehow that commitment sounds more like steadfastness than like patience. Besides, I think patience is overrated, whereas steadfastness is a wonderful aspiration. Just a personal preference.
It’s amazing how quickly the glow can turn to gloom. Suddenly, a gopher snake sunning by my car transmutes our delightful field where I was about to walk to a waste howling wilderness. A spider on the ceiling warrants enough strokes with a fly swatter to require a paint touch-up. If our city cannot sustain a moratorium presently forestalling enactment of a new state law, a marijuana shop is ready to open in the same building as my husband’s law office. Believe it or not, we specifically hate this prospect. He will move his office. And last night marked my fifth consecutive night with a migraine. They missed me; they’re back.
I’m not feeling particularly cheery, enthused, or chatty. I pray for the blessings of God’s intervening mercies, grace to bear what I’m given with more steadfastness and without bitterness, and my friends’ forbearance.