My thoughts on James 1:11 This is only the beginning of what one verse can truly mean. Scripture is so powerful. I reference James 1:9-11. Open your Bible and read it first.
He who dies with the most toys, still dies. I remember seeing the bumper sticker he who dies with the most toys wins. What do they win? They still have the same fate to face as the person who died with not one luxury. In the end the things we have don’t matter. Only a screwed up individual would ask for his 75″ tv at his death bed. Life happens and death happens. Only what’s done in the spiritual will last beyond the dash.
They rich man and the poor man are equalized by their trials (MacArthur). The trials that we are to rejoice in are what erase the distance between the rich man and the poor man. I love the word picture of graceful countenance. I can picture a garden drying up and becoming colorless. That’s how we need to see our stuff. It’s nice for now, but there is no need for it in our relationship with God. I like how the meanings of the word take you from the larger picture to the individual picture. The garden/field/grass/plants will dry up. The blossom with it’s graceful countenance will fall off and die. We can’t just think of this as meant for someone else. The wording is a direct challenge to each of us individually. How do we set our priorities? We need to count our trials as joy, because they get deeper than what’s on the surface and remind us that before God we are all the same. Before God our wealth and success don’t matter. It’s not like when we stand before God all that stuff will be in boxes and suitcases ready to be brought up to our new mansion. None of it goes with us.
I have this picture of me standing before God with these strings attached to the back of me. To my head and back and legs. It’s hard to move closer to Him because all these things weigh me back and pull on me, but the can’t come beyond that invisible separation between Earth and Heaven. So I’m standing there and these things are pulling me backward instead of me moving closer to God. I need God to cut these tethers so I can move into Heaven. I can literally feel the scripture that it is harder for a rich man to enter the kingdom then a camel through the eye of the needle. I don’t want to wait until I’m standing before God to have these tethers cut off of me. God, please cut them now. Please help me release them and rejoice in my trials because they help me stand before you with humility and honesty. God, I can’t find glory in what I gain on this earth. It’s all just wind (Ecclesiastes). I can’t hold on to it anymore than I can to the wind. God, please un-tether me today, so I can fall forward on my face in your presence rather than being pulled back into the world.