In our last visit we began a study of what James says about patience and perseverance. He describes how farmers, prophets and Job all demonstrate patience and perseverance as they wait for what they expect. Now let’s look at James 5:7-11 again and see what he says about patience and perseverance while waiting during what was unexpected.
The farmer tills the soil, fertilizes and then plants the seed. Then he waits for the valuable crop. But he doesn’t know for sure if the weather will cooperate. James says he is patient as he waits for the autumn and spring rains. Irregular weather is a real challenge to the patience and perseverance of the farmer.
The prophet too needs to be patient and persevere when he proclaims God’s Word. With assurance that God will use it to accomplish His purpose there’s no guarantee that those who hear the message will respond positively to it. Many prophets were tortured and even put to death. As they waited for the expected they had to deal with the unexpected. And so do we.
Consider Job. He lived righteously and enjoyed God’s blessing. But as he faithfully lived for God he experienced devastating tragedy. He lost his children, animals, buildings and his health, but he patiently endured and persisted in living for God during these unexpected losses.
As we wait for the expected we might have to be patient and persistent when unexpected things confront us. Someone put it this way: “It will be worth it all when we see Jesus.” I trust you believe this. It will help you during unexpected setbacks in life.