You introduce your children to a new friend. With a big smile you say, “Here is my collection of living, breathing trials. I can’t wait for you to meet them.” Your friend says, “Did you just call your children trials?!?”
You reply, “Yes, yes I did. Honesty is the best policy and honestly, trials are exactly what they are, all three of them. Care for lunch?”
I know, sort of a bizarre conversation, isn’t it. Or is it?
When things are challenging with your children, it is easier to think of them as trials rather than gifts from God. The reality is that both descriptors, trials and gifts, are accurate biblical terms to describe your children. In places like Deuteronomy 6:5-7 and Ephesians 6:1-4 we read that teaching children to love God is to be a 24/7 activity. So the battle is on. You, as a parent, are to be engaged in hand-to-hand combat for your children’s spiritual well-being. On a good day you see blessings. On most days you see trials.
Let’s think about this for a moment. Is it really appropriate to call your little blessings trials? The answer I believe is yes! James says count it pure joy when you face trials of many kinds. The trials that your children represent to you are opportunities to confront them with the gospel of Jesus Christ and the truth written by the Holy Spirit! Your children, born in darkness, provide you the wonderful trial of battling for truth in their lives. This is what James calls pure joy!