12 Blessed is the one who perseveres under trial because, having stood the test, that person will receive the crown of life that the Lord has promised to those who love him.
13 When tempted, no one should say, “God is tempting me.” For God cannot be tempted by evil, nor does he tempt anyone; 14 but each person is tempted when they are dragged away by their own evil desire and enticed. 15 Then, after desire has conceived, it gives birth to sin; and sin, when it is full-grown, gives birth to death.
Each of us as believers will be tempted or have trials. Satan is our tempter, if we allow ourselves to be overcome by the temptation it drags us away from God.
Our reward is eternal in Heaven.
As I was thinking about these verses over the last few days, I heard a DJ on the radio comment on something that a Christian musician said and his name escapes me now but he said that " his joy in trials comes when he remembers that Heaven is his eternal home" What a wonderful hope we have that our trials and temptations are only on this Earth. Also that as we go through those trials and temptations we know that none of them are unknown to God, he has felt each one of them.
Trials are something that every believer has to go through, just because we are child of God does not mean we are immune to them. Our trials make us stronger, but also help us in relating to and encouraging other people. One of my favorite authors is Joni Eareckson Tada, she herself has gone through a lot in her life, one of her quotes I read this week that I felt was appropriate to this passage is
"The greatest good suffering can do for me is to increase my capacity for God." If we come out of a trial with a deeper desire to love and serve God then it means that it was worth while. None of us like to go through trials as it causes so much pain, yet when we think of what Christ endured on the cross for us then our suffering seems very small in comparison.
"God is more concerned with conforming me to the likeness of His Son than leaving me in my comfort zones. God is more interested in inward qualities than outward circumstances - things like refining my faith, humbling my heart, cleaning up my thought life and strengthening my character." Joni Eareckson Tada
I want to finish with the above quote of Joni's as I think it too really sums up verses 12- 15. Our trials often push us out of our comfort zone and often move us into a much deeper relationship with Jesus. In our trials we need to stay focused on God, Satan will use this time to make us doubt and even to fall away from God. This doesn't mean we can't be sad or feel the pain in our trial, but we also need to cling to Jesus.