3 knowing that the testing of your faith produces endurance.
Here is my paraphrase of verse 3 while looking at the Greek words used. "Knowing through the trial that the the approval of your faith works out endurance." True faith is like gold. It can't be destroyed by trial's fire. It can only be refined. A lot of things we thought were faith will be burned away, but what we are left with is an approved true faith. Don't miss it...this true faith is powerful. It might seem we have no faith left, but even the smallest amount (even the size of a mustard seed) of this approved faith can move mountains.
It is this approved faith that works out endurance. Endurance in this passage literally means "steadfastness through difficulties." Endurance is not created by faith. It is tied to it awaiting to be realized. No faith with trials equals ashes. Faith with trials equals endurance. Endurance can only be seen through the testing (approval process) of our faith. This is what it was made for. It is there in each of us waiting to be seen. Endurance needs difficulties to prove itself, and the most incredible truth is when this endurance goes full-term we will be spiritual mature and complete, lacking nothing.
This is a huge win...HUGE! This is what we all strive for, but in the trials I so easily miss this truth. No wonder James shares verse 2. This is why I can count it ALL joy when I face trialsof ANY kind because in the end, if I go through the process, it will take me exactly where I want to be - fully devoted to Him.