PurposePursuit

The Daily Tests of our Faith

image
Background Image by András Fejes via flickr

I have read the story of Gideon’s army and how God cut its size from 32,000 to 300, with an appreciation of God’s jealousy for His Glory and Honour. But as I read that scripture again, my eyes were opened to the significance of the process by which God made the cut. I am drawn particularly to the second test God put the soldiers through.

God said to Gideon: “There are still too many. Take them down to the stream and I’ll make a final cut. When I say, ‘This one goes with you,’ he’ll go. When I say, ‘This one doesn’t go,’ he won’t go.” So Gideon took the troops down to the stream. God said to Gideon: “Everyone who laps with his tongue, the way a dog laps, set on one side. And everyone who kneels to drink, drinking with his face to the water, set to the other side.” Three hundred lapped with their tongues from their cupped hands. All the rest knelt to drink. God said to Gideon: “I’ll use the three hundred men who lapped at the stream to save you and give Midian into your hands. All the rest may go home.” Judges 7:4-7 MSG

I have learnt from my interactions with the Scriptures that God is not a fan of too many. But for Him to thin out an army by the way the soldiers lapped water is just a very funny thing to do. I sought to understand the lesson in this story with specific interest in what made the 300 qualified to (just like it is with our pursuits of purpose) fight a battle God was determined to win for them. It is the understanding from my search that I wish to share very briefly with you.

The pursuit of purpose is a life of faith. But faith that cannot be tested cannot be trusted. So, we find that as we walk with God, our faith is tested on a daily basis. Just like the test of faith of the soldiers as they drank water, too many times our faith is tested in ways very unassuming and simple as we go about our daily routines.

God tests our faith as we encounter a very naughty bus conductor; our faith is tested as we are tagged in an immoral post on Facebook with link to a site full of junks; our faith is tested as we interact with people in our places of work and they so get on our nerves. 

It is my understanding that many times, we think we are merely drinking water but God does more with such trivialities. He tests our faith, courage and convictions.

I once read about one leading minister who always took a drive with a prospective pastoral staff member in the latter’s car, just to see if the car was neat and if the man drove carefully. Whether or not neatness and careful driving habits guarantee ministerial success is debatable, but the lesson is worth considering. More than one prospective employee have ruined their chances for a job while having lunch with the boss, not realizing they were being evaluated.

I am reminded of an incident that I now see as a test of my faith. It was a Tuesday, almost midnight. I needed to blog but network refused to indulge me. I was angry at the network, God and even my laptop. I thought that if God gave me this piece to blog, why can he not work the network out too. But in all of that, I heard God say, in quietness and trust shall be my strength; but it was just too difficult be quiet or to trust him.

Philip Yancey wrote in his commentary on the book of Job, in his book, The Bible Jesus Read, that if Job had known that God had placed a bet on his righteousness, he probably would not have said some of things he said.

So, here’s my challenge to us this week: Take your everyday, ordinary life — your sleeping, eating, going-to-work, and walking-around life — and place it before God as an offering, walking circumspectly and making God famous!


Do you have a personal story of a testing of your faith in very little things that may not be thought to matter? Please feel free to share. You may just encourage someone else to pass their test. Just drop a comment!

©2014, Alabi AimPurpose IfeOluwa
All rights reserved.

Advertisements

6 thoughts on “The Daily Tests of our Faith”

  1. I’ve come to understand that until you pass the test of overcoming your ‘natural weaknesses’you can’t be optimally used by God. For some it’s sexual sin, for some it’s money, while for some it’s vanity of pride. You’ve given specific examples and I can relate with virtually all. Good piece. Keep hot the spirit!

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Thanks for your comment Tim. I agree that the test of overcoming your natural weakness is key to maximizing your potentials. I am glad you can relate with the specific examples I shared. It is good to know I am not alone. Thanks for the kind words!

      Like

  2. Of a truth, our character is not proven just by the ‘big things’ we do but even the ‘little things’ that do not seem like they matter. It can be as little as saying sorry just to allow peace to reign or even loving a room mate genuinely. I could remember how i used to clash frequently with one of my room mates back then in school all because of very trivial things. Every time we clashed, God kept whispering to me the need to love my neighbour as myself, until I cried out to Him for help and frequently prayed for my roommate, I didn’t have the power to correct her in a loving manner or overlook some things. I do know that the experience made me stronger. Aimpurpose, thank you for allowing God to expand Gideon’s story in your heart. I’m very familiar with the story but I’d never seen it in this light. Keep up the good work!

    Like

    1. Yes, God’s testing of our faith is to build our character and too often, the very trivial things are the issues from which these tests arise. I am glad God helped you to grow stronger through the experiences you had with your roommates. It can only get better. Thanks for dropping by Chief, it’s a pleasure to have you here!

      Like

  3. Where I worked before, I was responsible for collating monthly reports from several branches of the organization. I was tested one day when I chided a colleague for turning in his team’s report late. But from the tone of his voice he was facing an undisclosed challenge. After he hung up, I called him back and apologized for how I spoke to him. (Matter of factly, he deserved it.) He replied by saying that he was encouraged and was convinced that I listen to the voice of the Holy Spirit by my apology. I was humbled! Yes, our faith is tested daily. May we not fail our tests.

    Like

    1. When we pass tests, we are stronger and people around us see it. Our impact is limited by the struggles we have when we fail in our tests. I am happy God helped you in that situation. I am sure your relationship with the person was strengthened by it. Thanks for sharing your story and joining in this conversation!

      Liked by 1 person

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s