In verses 2-4, James shares a powerful truth; The only way out of trials is through them. As he continues his letter, he transitions to talk about wisdom and double-mindedness. He starts verse 5 with If… It’s almost as if he recognizes that trials expose a lack of wisdom and insight. The type of insight that only God can give.
James is not ignorant of the trials of life. The language used for meeting trials meant that it was inevitable. We, just like everyone else, will have different situations that cause us trouble. Not all of our situations will be the same, but we know that eventually we will encounter them. It’s important for us to view each hard time with the right perspective.
The book of James was written to encourage believers to be patient in trials, increase their faith, and examine their doctrine and practice. James understood the need for endurance while being tested and that testing produces maturity in Christ. He highlighted the importance of unwavering faith and what Christian belief looked like in everyday life. He taught that faith in God resulted in changed behavior.
The book of Ruth shows the transformation and redemption of two women. Naomi, who starts out abandoned and angry at God, releases bitterness to embrace hope and joy. Ruth, who leaves behind her home and culture, embraces obedience and faith to find redemption.
For Ruth, one midnight changes everything. She trusts the word of Naomi and lays in obedience at the feet of Boaz. In faith, Ruth finds covering and redemption.
Some people may read Ruth and think all of these details lining up are just a coincidence, but God is intentional. God’s providence is not happenstance. We serve a God that is aware of our needs and arranges resources for our provision.