Some people find themselves with riches, and others find themselves in poverty. No matter where you land on that scale today you are facing an enormous pressure to focus on the world rather than on Jesus.
If you find yourself near the poor end of that scale, it is very easy to be consumed with worry about everything, because you don’t know where the money is going to come from. James is telling us that if you find yourself in that situation, you lack the proper perspective. Rather than focusing on what you do not have and comparing yourself to others who have more money, or possession, or whatever it may be… Focus instead on Jesus. Boast in the high status that you have in Him!
For those who are rich James is saying to boast not in the riches! It is very easy to be consumed by what you have and even flaunting that in pride. Yet James is saying to boast in your humiliation. Meaning that you must recognize that your wealth is temporary. When we see that it is not forever it loses much of its power over us. It frees us to be more generous and more willing to be different with our money. Especially as a Christian we are called to be counter-cultural even with money.
Notice that it was never said that you should be poor or you should be rich. Rather, James is emphasizing that we must have the proper perspective and response to wherever God has allowed us to land on the scale.
By: Dakota Gragg — Student Ministry Associate