Wednesday, June 8, 2011

When Your Faith is on Trial

The other day a good friend told me that she, her husband and others see me as a woman of faith. I didn’t think so, as at times I really struggle and think I am letting God down when the joy of the Lord just doesn’t seem to radiate out of me.
I feel as if my faith has let me down and I am about to curl up in a shell like a snail because it’s all too much and my “self” wants to run away.
They have seen me over the last 25 years bring my five children to church every week on my own and see this and other struggles I come through as my great faith.

I have just had a really hard time in my marriage and struggled again with whether it was going to last through this ‘test’. 
But right at the right time God was there for me.

It was Saturday and I was on my own. I hadn’t been up-to-date with my daily readings. I was really feeling sorry for myself and wondering if this was just the last straw and maybe everyone was right it was time for a new life alone. In my despair I was checking emails and for some reason Saturdays reading arrived by email.
I have been getting The Word For Today this way as well as the booklet from Radio Rhema but for some reason the emails just hadn’t been coming through most days. This is what it said.

Your Faith Is on Trial

Written by Bob & Debby Gass

Saturday, 4 June 2011
' not think it strange...' 1 Peter 4:12 NKJV
Faith in God doesn't exempt you from life's trials; it sustains you in them and you grow stronger as a result of them. Trials come in different areas such as sickness, unemployment, relational conflict, and personal challenges. And trials have different time lines; some last a short season, others a lifetime. And trials, like storms, have different intensity levels. But most trials have one thing in common: they make you say, 'If only I could understand why this has happened.'

The Bible answers this question in two Scriptures: 'Many are the afflictions of the righteous, but the Lord delivers him out of them all' (Psalm 34:19 NKJV); and '...for a little have been grieved by various trials, that the genuineness of your faith, being much more precious than gold that perishes, though it is tested by fire, may be found to praise, honour, and glory...' (1 Peter 1:6-7 NKJV). God is not Santa Claus or your butler. It's not His job to give you everything you want, exactly when you want it. Yes, God has promised to bless us, but when you focus on 'getting', by implication you question the faith of those who may not have as much as you. That's a mistake.

Claiming God's promises doesn't mean you will escape adversity. Who told you that anyway? Not God! His Word says, 'Do not think it strange concerning the fiery trial which is to try you, as though some strange thing happened to you.' Real maturity often takes place in the crucible of pain. The truth is, you'll never know how strong your faith is until you've been there. 

I struggled with this but knew it was totally from God. Why this day, of all days, did the reading come through?

I took my son to a friend of his for the day and on the way I cried in my heart to God. “I understand but I just want to be happy”
God said my happiness was to be in Him. I could always have the joy of the Lord whatever was going on around me. 
I wanted to know where the blessings were and He told me “in your family, your children, grandchildren and their love for me.”

I spent the next day and a half staying at some friends and read the bible, prayed and sort my strength form God.

I read many verses from 1 Corinthians chapters 7 to 10 and the more I read the more God showed me He wanted me to stay in the marriage and know He would bring me through. I would have to be strong in Him.

26 Because of the present crisis, I think that it is good for you to remain as you are. 27 Are you married? Do not seek a divorce.
34...But a married woman is concerned about the affairs of this world—how she can please her husband. 35 I am saying this for your own good, not to restrict you, but that you may live in a right way in undivided devotion to the Lord.

I made the decision to listen to His voice and having strength in Him I was able to talk to Harry and worked through the crisis.

Suffice to say God has been true to His Word and we are standing strong again.
There is still work to be done but we will continue building a stronger marriage.

All scripture is from New International Version 1984 (unless otherwise started)

1 comment :

  1. Every man wants a happy wife and therefore a happy life...someone who honours him and thinks he is the only one worthy of your love as it is between the disciples and ask not why things are like they are but rather how you are making this great future happen because change begins not with in critical heart but with right loving attitudes.