Never make the mistake of thinking you are responsible for all that you have. The triumphs of life are gifts, not merit badges. Sometimes people get what they deserve for their hard work and effort, but just as often they do not. James says that every good thing in life is from the Father above who is the source of life itself.

The following story illustrates how we become confused about how we got what we have. A newspaper reporter went to interview a successful entrepreneur. “How did you do it?” he asked. “How did you make all this money?” The entrepreneur was glad to tell his story. “You see, when my wife and I married, we started out with a roof over our heads, some food in our pantry, and five cents between us. I took that nickel, went down to the grocery store, bought an apple, then shined it up and sold it for ten cents. Then I bought more apples, shined them up and sold them for twenty cents apiece.” The reporter was beginning to catch on, and thought this would be a great human interest story. “Then what happened?” he asked excitedly. “Then my father-in-law died and left us $20 million,” the rich man said. He had fooled himself into thinking he had done something, forgetting that he had received something.

Don’t forget all you have been given, and remember to thank the Giver for each and every good thing He bestows.