“Attention. This is a test. How you respond will reveal your heart.”
My husband recorded our children one night when they were very young. Unaware they were being recorded, they openly whined over having to go to bed instead of going out for ice cream.
Later, when we listened to the recording together, they giggled at themselves. Larry had fun replaying certain particularly pathetic sounding pleas.
That made me think about how I respond to disappointment. If I knew my heavenly Father was recording how I handle downers, would I alter my reactions?
What about you? If you knew your actions revealed what’s hidden in your heart, would you censor them? Those thoughts helped me with a recent letdown.
Every holiday season, I wish I had more room around our dining room table. With our home addition complete, we have room for a longer table this year. In early October, I found one on a website I thought would work. The sales representative told me it would arrive in their showroom in December.
Two weeks before Thanksgiving I learned it had arrived just in time for Thanksgiving and Christmas! This would make the holiday season more fun for everyone.
My daughter Ginny rode with me to check it out. We liked it. But I wanted Larry to be happy with it too. He couldn’t make the three and a half hour round trip to see the table until Friday afternoon.
When I called to alert the sales woman that he was coming, her words stunned me. “If you’d called yesterday you could have had the table. It’s being loaded as we speak. A customer in Florida just bought it.”
This couldn’t be happening.
That week, I’d taught a group on the importance of entering God’s rest today. That means now instead of waiting until when I see resolution or when I understand why something happened.
The Scriptures talk about God testing Israel and us. Was this a test? Did I believe God’s timing was perfect? Would I trust Him in my disappointment? Was I putting conditions on my faith?
I could walk by faith or by sight. To bolster my faith, I looked up Scriptures on the purpose of tests. See what I found below:
- My reactions under pressure reveal my respect for God’s authority. God was “…testing you, to know what was in your heart, whether you would keep His commandments or not” (Deuteronomy 8:2, NASB).
- My response to disappointment reveals my love for God. “The Lord your God is testing you to find out if you love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul” (Deuteronomy 13:3, NASB).
- God uses tests for my ultimate benefit. “In the wilderness He fed you manna…that He might test you, to do good for you in the end” (Deuteronomy 13:8, NASB).
- God allows tests for my personal growth and character. “Consider it all joy, my brethren, when you encounter various trials, knowing that the testing of your faith produces endurance. And let endurance have its perfect result, so that you may be perfect and complete, lacking in nothing” (James 1:2-3, NASB).
Renewing my perspective calmed my nagging “what ifs.” Like brushing my teeth, my mind needs regular renewing to walk in faith.
What about you? Is some disappointment, frustration, or regret eroding your rest? May these verses encourage you as they did me.
Question: What trait of God best helps you trust Him with disappointment? Click here to comment.