Thoughts from daily Bible reading for today- March 13, 2011
“Remember how the Lord your God led you all the way in the desert these forty years, to humble you and to test you in order to know what was in your heart, whether or not you would keep his commands.” Deuteronomy 8:2
The treadmill of life can provide a real stress test for our heart. What’s in our heart comes out under duress. If resentment resides in your heart, then anger appears. If forgiveness is found in your heart, then peace exudes when pressured by outside forces. The heart does not show its true colors until it faces a test.
It is under the fire of a test that the heart of the matter surfaces to the top. This is why someone is able to mask hurt over a lifetime of disappointment by ignoring its deep-rooted influence. You can hide what’s in your heart, but eventually a test will lure it out. And, its exposure is for your benefit. God already knows what is concealed in your heart.
He is waiting to unlock its motives so that you can pass or fail His test of obedience. None of us likes to fail a test. That brings a feeling of incompetence and, sometimes, stupidity. We fail tests for a variety of reasons. Maybe there was a misunderstanding of the assignment, or we were bored with the material, or we just chose to do other things rather than prepare. This can be true in our relationship with God as well.
We can plead ignorance to God’s commands and our understanding of His ways. But this is a poor excuse in light of the voluminous resources of His truth and teaching that is available to us all. If boredom with the Christian life is an issue, you may need to discover, or rediscover, the real thing. Indeed, there is nothing about Jesus that is boring.
Or, if you have delayed your spiritual preparation, then now is a good time to get started. It is never too late to fall in love with God, serve Him, and follow His ways. Your life experience is preparation for the Kingdom of Heaven. Therefore, engage with Christ in robust worship and intimate community with other followers of His.
Your current situation may very well be a test from God. He is squeezing your heart to see what is inside. It is healthy to flush out deceptive feelings that may be leading you to be fearful and to distrust. Your heart can be a tool of transformation for good, or it can be Satan’s device of deception.
Moreover, this test you are experiencing has jolted you into reality. You now have a desperate and fresh dependence on God. He is front and center in your thinking. The carousel of careless living has stopped, and you are dizzy with despair. It is at this point of dependence on God where you need to camp out. Never leave this posture of prayer.
He will meet you here every time. Or, maybe this is a test of affluence.
Your wealth has exceeded all limits and expectations. Will you stick to your guns of giving it all away beyond your cap of contentment? This is a test of what is truly in your heart. Words can easily betray what your heart’s motivation really is, but your actions will validate their worth. Your prosperity can compete with your obedience to God, or it can accelerate it. Use this heavenly test for the transformation of your earthly thinking.
One reason that bad things happen to good people is to enable them to see what motivates them. A worthy motivation is nothing less than the unleashing of the character of Christ within your heart. Allow this test to recalibrate you and transform you to this standard. Tests are for a season. Tests are for a reason. Tests purify. Tests mature. Tests bless. Tests are for your good. Therefore, prepare, learn and test well for His glory!
Taken from Dose 46 in the 90-day devotional book, Infusion.
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Thank you for your truthful perspective!!! Can’t get enough of a healthy outlook on hardships, challenges and real transformation!!!! Kim Leiter
Thanks for reminding us that trials have a purpose in our lives. Many times in my life I have seen things that I thought were bad, and maybe the enemy meant them for bad, God turned them around and made them into blessings. Sometimes we just have to hold onto him until we get through the storm.
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