James 1:2–4

In the northeastern United States, codfish are not only delectable, they are a big commercial business. There’s a market for eastern cod all over, especially in sections farthest removed from the northeast coastline. But for years the public demand posed a problem to the shippers. At first, they froze the cod, then shipped them elsewhere, but the freeze took away much of the flavour. So they experimented with shipping them alive, in tanks of seawater, but that proved even worse. Not only was it more expensive, the cod still lost its flavour, and in addition, became soft and mushy. Their texture was seriously affected.

Finally, some creative soul solved the problem in a most innovative manner. The codfish were placed in the tank of water along with their natural enemy—the catfish. From the time the cod left the East Coast until it arrived in its westernmost destination, those ornery catfish chased the cod all over the tank! You guessed it, when the cod arrived at the market, they were as fresh as when they were first caught. There was no loss of flavour nor was the texture affected. If anything, it was better than before.

Adversity keeps our faith fresh and active. Read carefully these words of James:

Dear brothers and sisters, when troubles of any kind come your way, consider it an opportunity for great joy. For you know that when your faith is tested, your endurance has a chance to grow. So let it grow, for when your endurance is fully developed, you will be perfect and complete, needing nothing (James 1:2–4).

If today you are facing some pesky circumstances or a trial that not only won’t go away, but, in fact, is intensifying, meditate on the truth from God’s Word. He is at work in your adversity to stretch and strengthen your faith. At the end of the trial, your faith will be fresh and inviting to others ... like fresh-caught cod, grilled to perfection!


Devotional content taken from Good Morning, Lord ... Can We Talk? by Charles R. Swindoll. Copyright ©2018. Used by permission of Tyndale House Publishers, a Division of Tyndale House Ministries. All rights reserved.