Faith That Tests
It’s in the tough times of life that we find out what we’re made of.
No matter how successful we are, we all face challenges, struggles and times when things don’t go our way. When calamities occur, some people immediately think they have done something wrong, that God must surely be punishing them. They don’t understand that God has a divine purpose for every challenge that comes into our life. He doesn’t send the problems, but sometimes He allows us to go through them.
Why is that? The Bible says temptations, trials, and difficulties must come, because if we are to strengthen our spiritual muscles and grow stronger, we must have adversities to overcome and attacks to resist. Moreover, it’s in the tough times of life that we find out what we’re really made of. The pressure exposes things we need to deal with, things such as wrong attitudes, wrong motives, areas where we’re compromising. As odd as this may seem, the trials can be beneficial.
The Scripture says, “Do not be amazed and bewildered at the fiery ordeal which is taking place to test your quality, as though something strange were befalling you” (1 Peter 4:12). Notice, the trial is intended to test your quality, to test your character, to test your faith. In other word, don’t think it’s a big deal when you go through tough times. All through life, you will face various tests, and even though you may not enjoy them, God will use those trials to refine you. He’s trying to shape you into the person He wants you to be. If you will learn to cooperate with God and be quick to change and correct the areas that He brings to light, you’ll pass the test, and you will be promoted to a new level.
I’ve discovered that in the struggles of life, God is more interested in changing me than He is in changing my circumstances. I’m not saying that God won’t change the circumstances. Certainly, He can and often does. But most of the time I’m tested in the areas where I am the weakest, so I can discover my true strength in God.
God is not going to change anyone we are dealing with until He first changes us. When we quit complaining about everybody around us and, instead, start taking a good look inside ourselves and working with God to change us from the inside, God will change those other people. Examine your own heart and see if there are attitudes and motives that you need to change.
A successful person is one who can lay a firm foundation with the bricks that others throw at him or her. David Brinkley
A Prayer For Today: God, I am willing to change. I want to grow. I don’t want to settle for a mediocre life, and I know that’s not what You created me for. So I’m going to be calm. I’m going to be patient. Whatever circumstances happen in my life, help me to look to You and ask what You would have me learn how You would change me and cause me to grow. When I can do that, I know You will turn my challenges into assets, my struggles into great victories.
What counts is not necessarily the size of the dog in the fight-it’s the size of the fight in the dog. (Dwight Eisenhower)
Takeaway Truth: God is using the circumstances of my life to do a wonderful work in me.