Test me, O Lord, and try me, examine my heart and my mind;
Search me, O God, and know my heart; test me and know my anxious thoughts. See if there is any offensive way in me, and lead me in the way everlasting.
Last Wednesday night, Pastor Chris presented a message called “Passing Life’s Tests.” There are ten tests he suggested that all of us will’; go through at some time or another.
In this world we will face trouble. Trials will come our way; it’s a fact. Not only do we question the reason for these times, but we also try to determine the source of the trial. We might blame people for something difficult we are experiencing, or we may possibly accuse Satan for our troubles. Tests usually take place in our lives to measure how we are doing. In school, obviously, a test determines our level of academics. In life, the tests often point to where we might fall on the scale in our faith journey. The secret to that process is not only understanding the tests we undergo but allowing ourselves to appreciate the tests we encounter.
Here are the 10 Tests in Life:
1. of Small Things
This test will reflect how faithful we are in things that may personally seem insignificant to us. But, if we are faithful in the little things, the Lord will give us a chance to be faithful in the big things. An example of faithfulness in small things would be taking the opportunity at the workplace or in ministry to do something no one else desires to do. When I worked in Disney World, the entire cast was encouraged to pick up trash in the park. Everyone was expected to take pride in the small things required whether your job was selling merchandise or operating as a tour guide on the Jungle Cruise. In other words, work as hard as you can as if you were working for the Lord–Who is the real CEO after all! God smiles at the .
2. The Motivation Test
This test will determine if we are doing things with the correct motive. God is much more interested in our heart than our sacrifice. No matter what we do, no matter how great it may be….it means nothing without the . An example of this would be the character Job. The devil tried to prove that Job would curse the Lord’s Name once calamity befell him. However, God allowed the tests Job had to endure in order to prove that Job’s true character of devotion and commitment to the One True God would remain the same. He praised God’s Name in the storm. His heart stayed pure throughout all the trauma he had to withstand. The result? Job was restored much more than he had in the first place.
3. The Stewardship Test
How do we currently manage the resources that God is giving us? As the Lord blesses us with provisions, time, relationships, etc, do we in return give out of the overflow we receive. What’s the point of our gifts if we cannot share them? So, let’s be faithful in our tithe, faithful and wise in the use of our time, and faithful in growing relationships. The best way to gain a friend is to become one. We are only able to LOVE, because He first loved us.
4. The Wilderness Test
We all experience dry seasons in our walk. There have been times that we don’t have the desire to read the Bible, or the passion to pray, or even the energy or motivation to be nice to people. We must stay devoted to the Word, Prayer, and People even when we don’t feel like it. Love is an action, not a feeling. The best way to stay devoted in these areas is to be pliable and be open for change. All circumstances and situations will change. The to remember is that GOD NEVER CHANGES. If we want to be aligned with His will and at peace, we must allow Him to mold us and stay committed to the things that matter….The Word, Prayer, and Healthy Relationships.
5. Credibility /
Don’t live according to the customs of the world. It’s easy to allow the world to influence our talk, our wardrobe, our activities, etc. We must focus on staying pure and being honest with ourselves and others. We need to be the same person on Friday night that we are on Sunday mornings. WWJD? Yes, we must ask ourselves, “What would Jesus do?”
6. The Authority Test
Submission is an attitude that God is looking for. We must determine our submission and keep our attitudes pure. It’s ok to disagree, but we can still be submissive to our leaders. Don’t talk negatively about your boss. Be respectful and faithful to God. God commands us to submit to authority. Of course, our Ultimate Authority is most important.
7. The Test
We must not hate people. We must instead hate the devil. Our conflict is not with flesh and blood. But, you might say, “He hurt me.” Well…..our mindset should be that of Christ. We have no right to hold anything against someone, because, the ONLY REASON WE HAVE LIFE IS BECAUSE GOD LET US OFF THE HOOK AT THE CROSS. The best way to show mercy is to put ourselves in the other person’s shoes. Maybe that person has had a bad day. Maybe that person is struggling over many things. Maybe that person doesn’t have God. The best way we can show someone Jesus is to be like Jesus. Forgiving an offense simply means canceling the debt. God will provide the healing if we take the step to LET GO and LET GOD step in and change hearts.
8. The Warfare Test
This test exposes our ability to stand strong when all Hell breaks loose. If you lose your job, you get sick, a relationship is stirred up, and you can’t find your keys …..you feel like throwing your hands up in the air and giving up. Most of the time when it rains….it pours. God won’t allow us to go through anything that He won’t provide the strength and perseverance for. Usually, it’s pretty obvious when we are in the midst of warfare, because it becomes comical how many things seem to be going poorly.
9. The Test of Time
Whoa…this one is a hot point for me. This test is the test of our patience. We want it NOW, NOW, NOW!! Or, we might have a COW, COW, COW!! If we will relax and wait until His appointed time, His plan instead of our forced plan will unfold and it will become more than we could ever hope for or imagine! Seize the day, enjoy the NOW…don’t rush ahead…wait on the Author of Perfect Planning!
10. The Lordship Test
This tests whether or not God really has the last Word in our lives. God didn’t want “Isaac” ….instead He wanted Abraham. Abraham’s heart and commitment to God was proven, and when Abraham’s devotion was reflected, God rewarded Abraham and provided the ram. If we truly serve Him, we are saying,”Thy will be done.” Is He genuinely the Lord of our lives?
HE PROVIDES TESTS SO THAT WE CAN EXPERIENCE TRUE LIFE!
SUBMISSION WILL BRING SUCCESS
WALK THE WALK AND TALK THE TALK….
IT’S EASY WHEN WE ARE IN LOVE WITH JESUS!