Brothers | Shaped | Tests
…knowing that the testing of your faith produces endurance. (James 1:3)
What is the purpose of a test? Tests don’t teach us the material, they only show us what we don’t know. An algebra test reveals what you don’t know about algebra. A science test reveals what you need to study in science. A driver’s test determines whether or not you should be allowed to operate a car by yourself. And a faith test comes disguised as trouble to show us how strong or weak our faith is. How we respond to that trouble reveals what we need to work on. God already knows our grade. We’re the ones who need the report card. Let’s consider what some of those tests might look like:
- You get cut off in traffic for the third time. Do you: A) flip off the jerk… B) resort to profanity… C) thank God you didn’t get hit.
- The CT scan shows a mass. Do you: A) freak out on anyone nearby… B) get mad at God… C) turn it over to the Lord.
- You’re tired of being single. Do you: A) sleep with the next date… B) lower your standards… C) wait on God’s timing.
- Money is tight. Do you: A) blow the rest on lottery tickets… B) steal some… C) ask God to help you make it stretch.
God does not delight in our troubles, but He does want to use them to develop endurance in us. Endurance is the key indicator of whether or not we’re true followers of Jesus (Matt. 10:22; Luke 21:19). Troubles either drive us away from God or closer to Him.
Final Thought: How’d you do on your test? Your answers reveal what you need to work on. Endurance gets an A+.
Prayer: Father, I don’t respond to tests very well. I freak out or take matters into my own hands. Help me see troubles as a way to showcase where I need more faith. I want to be faithful to you in good times and in bad. In Jesus’ name, Amen.