James 1:9-11 looks at the perspective of rich and poor.
The Word states, 9 "Let the lowly brother glory in his exaltation, 10 but the rich in his humiliation, because as a flower of the field he will pass away. 11 For no sooner has the sun risen with a burning heat than it withers the grass; its flower falls, and its beautiful appearance perishes. So the rich man also will fade awayin his pursuits." NKJV
Both poverty and prosperity are concrete examples of trials that test our faith. Either may result in spiritual disaster. The Believer who is poor materially can rejoice in his spiritual position as a child of God, while the rich person can rejoice in new values, realizing the temporal nature of earthly wealth as opposed to the eternal benefits of spiritual possessions.
- 'Fade Away' - refers to the certain destruction of people who are rich only in temporal things.
I like how The Message states this:
- 10-14 I'm glad in God, far happier than you would ever guess-happy that you're again showing such strong concern for me. Not that you ever quit praying and thinking about me. You just had no chance to show it. Actually, I don't have a sense of needing anything personally. I've learned by now to be quite content whatever my circumstances. I'm just as happy with little as with much, with much as with little. I've found the recipe for being happy whether full or hungry, hands full or hands empty. Whatever I have, wherever I am, I can make it through anything in the One who makes me who I am. I don't mean that your help didn't mean a lot to me-it did. It was a beautiful thing that you came alongside me in my troubles.
Express contentment in every condition of life.
It is both honorable and kind to help a good minister in trouble. True Believers by nature will feel concern for their friends in their difficulties and to do what they can to help them. The apostle Paul was content in all of his trials as well as in the process. He made the best of it. When man chooses to take any wrong course for their own supply [pride, unbeielf, desiring of present things] the result is oftentimes a loss of contentment. As Paul did, choose humility and keep your mind focused on God as our Provider when we are abased. His providence never fails and His comfort in time of need is more than enough.
GBY! Barbara :)
- This biog is an extension of HOPE Ministry and "The Secret Place" -- if it has sown a blessing into your life please consider sowing back into the ministry at the website link below: