After these things God tested Abraham and said to him, “Abraham!” And he said, “Here I am.” Genesis 22:1
I’ve spoken with three women, just this week, who believe God is testing them. He’s led each of them into the wilderness and the pain and pressure seem unbearable. Whether I am a new Christian or a seasoned believer, a time of testing challenges my view of God and how He loves His children. How can He say that I am the apple of His eye yet test me with pain? Can it really be that the resulting faith is so valuable to both of us that the testing is really a loving act, not a cruel one?
I’m not going to attempt to answer any of those questions here. Just raise them. I’m about to enter the story of Abraham’s testing period. He’s asked to sacrifice his own son on the altar. It’s inconceivable that God would ask such a thing, isn’t it? So, I’m letting my unrest stand this morning. Questions are good. Though I already know the end of the story, Abraham didn’t. And like him, when testing comes, the pain that comes with it unearths the hidden things of my heart. What can stay conveniently veiled in good times erupts under stress. Lies and accusations abound when I was previously unaware such things existed in my own soul. Perhaps this is one of the ‘gifts’ of testing?
I’m jumping into the deep end of the pool. No shallow answers. I hope you’ll join me for the next week as we lace up Abraham’s sandals and feel the pain of a father’s heart. He is torn by his love for God and his love for his son. They appear to be mutually exclusive.
This morning, let’s feel the tension. If you are in the middle of testing, it’s okay to allow your own questions to surface. God will lead us through the minefields ahead of us.
Lord, I want You to speak to me through this story. Only Your voice, Lord. Reveal Yourself and give me the treasures of the darkness. Amen
Journal Question: Are you one who distracts yourself from feeling any pain? Maybe you escape into television, gadgets, work, food, Facebook, and even social functions with Christian friends. Will you take one lunch hour this week to fast for 30 minutes in order to seek God on a new level? Let’s make this commitment together.