God's goal for you + James 1:4 screensaver in English and Spanish

I don't know the season you're facing today. When it's not one thing, it's another, right? Waiting. 
Despairing. Doubting. All the various kinds of suffering possible, and there are many. 

The gospel writers don't skip around this reality: "For as we share abundantly in Christ's sufferings, so through Christ we share abundantly in comfort too" (2 Cor. 1:5 ESV).

We may not be able to sort out all the intricacies of God's plans in our suffering, but we do know one clear goal: to be mature and complete, lacking nothing. 
"Count it all joy, my brothers, when you meet trials of various kinds, for you know that the testing of your faith produces steadfastness. And let steadfastness have its full effect, that you may be perfect and complete, lacking in nothing." (Jamess 1:2-4 ESV)
Honestly, I'm not really comfortable with this verse. If you're like me, I want to say: "That's really nice, God, that you want me to be perfect and complete, but I'm pretty happy with who I am and I just want to do cool stuff for you and be really useful in the Kingdom. Isn't that enough?"

Dallas Willard, in The Divine Conspiracy**, wrote something that has been rolling around in my head for a few weeks now. He lays out what it looks like to be an everyday apprentice of Jesus and then he says, "What they [apprentices of Jesus], and God, get out of their lifetime is chiefly the person they become."

The lesson for me in the last few years has been that who I am becoming is way more important to God than what I do. And that's not because His Kingdom and His work are less important than the kingdom of me. It's because my ministry in the church and in the world flows out of the person that I am in Him. That's just how effective ministry works.

The hard, internal work of conforming us to the image of Jesus--not just at the level of our actions, but down deep to the level of our thoughts, our emotions, our will, our reactions--is what God is committed to. It's what yields the spiritual fruit that changes the world and brings Him glory.

Now let's be honest here. Knowing this goal of God's doesn't make trials easier. In some seasons, every second of every day can feel pained. But, when we trust that even in this, that God is good and that He is for us and our good, then we can persevere in hope.

I hope this encourages you today. The screensavers below are to remind you of the good God is doing in you and then through you as you go out and be the person God has and is forming you to be.

You can download them be clicking on the images (one on Spanish and one in English) below and saving to your phone. 


    

*I'm so happy for you to enjoy my coloring pages and printables for your personal (not commercial) use! Use for Bible studies, church groups or events, and Sunday school classes are all fine! If you're in doubt, I'm happy to answer any questions. All artwork and photos are copyright Marydean Draws. If you share this, thank you (!), and as a courtesy,  please link back to this post and not the PDF file. 

**affiliate link. We are a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for us to earn fees by linking to Amazon.com and affiliated sites.


               

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