Faith and works are necessary for salvation. When it comes to works, St. James means “labors.” We labor in the fields to build the kingdom. Not only do we wish people well, we provide for the necessities of their body. And as we labor we walk with Christ side by side carrying the cross.
We can be friends of God like Abraham and Sarah as we make this journey in faith. Not believing this makes us vain, empty-headed, or, in another translation, an ignoramus.