“Consider it a sheer gift, friends, when tests and challenges come at you from all sides. You know that under pressure, your faith-life is forced into the open and shows its true colors. So don’t try to get out of anything prematurely. Let it do its work so you become mature and well-developed, not deficient in any way.”James 1:2-4 MSG
Okay, so do you think it’s a gift from the hand of God when tests and challenges come at you from all sides? ( I can hear you saying, “not so much, Margo.”) Well, James says we’re to consider it a sheer gift from God. Huh?
I know. I used to balk at trials, tests and challenges. Thoughts would rush through my mind, “Why is this happening to me?” And I would do whatever I could to shorten that trial…but thankfully, not anymore.
After all, how am I gonna grow up in my faith if it isn’t tested? If everything is always hunky-dory, I’ll be able to muster through, except the problem with that approach, is that I think I have conquered my test…all on my own.
Meanwhile, when I’m under pressure, my faith-life is forced into the open and shows its true colors. This is when my “walking by faith and not by sight,” is being watched by others. They want to see if what I say is being acted out. They want to see if I’m a mess. If I’m anxious. If I’m fearful. Or if my faith is going to conquer my feelings…because faith is NOT a feeling. In fact, faith starves my fears.
See, when I am able to accept that everything God allows in my life is for my good and His glory…the good and the bad, the happy and the sad…then my focus is right. It’s on God and my response is, “What, Lord, are you teaching me through this test? What do you want me to learn?”
“And it is impossible to please God without faith. Anyone who wants to come to him must believe that God exists and that he rewards those who sincerely seek him.” (Hebrews 11:6 NLT)
So, let your faith be tested and let it do its work so you become mature and well-developed, not deficient in any way.
That’s it! Faith not tested is not faith at all. It’s sight. Hebrews 11:1 “Faith is being certain of what we hope for and certain of what we do not see.”
Certain and sure of what you do not see. So, how’s your faith-life?