Count It All Joy

Updated: May 18

Dr. Stephen Phinney

My mentor, Dr. David Jeremiah, was led by the Lord to write a book titled “Count It All Joy.” It stopped me in my path and made me think.


Consider it all joy, my brethren, when you encounter various trials, knowing that the testing of your faith produces endurance. And let endurance have its perfect result, so that you may be perfect and complete, lacking in nothing. (James 1:2-4)

Now, think about it. How can Biblical James encourage others to be joyful when he was suffering horrid persecution and distress? Worse yet, all the disciples suffered tremendous persecution, yet each proclaimed this message to new believers.

I received a two-page letter from an anonymous sender – packed with threats of my life, our ministry, and family. The letter was populated with lies he planned to spread throughout the community. This man lives in the community we live. These threats were of such magnitude that it gained the attention of the FBI. While I appreciated the government stepping in to help, I asked them NOT to let me know the outcome of their investigative results and possible prosecution. Within a short period, our mainframe computer system was hacked many times. They installed a reverse tracking system on our computers to catch the bandit in action. We were notified that they indeed found him and his dark web partner.

The guts of this matter set off multiple years of “fighting” rumors & lies that quickly spread throughout the community. Many damaging results affect us to this day. While the matter is challenging enough, the worst of this attack set in motion the Lord asking me to consider it all Joy. Are you serious, Lord? I realized I needed Divine Wisdom, which compelled me to ask for it.