Does God Test Us?
Ever been the unsuspecting victim of a pop-quiz? Your heart rate goes up, palms get sweaty, and anxiety mounts. Even if it’s not a surprise, truth is – tests suck. I don’t know anyone who loves being tested either on paper or by real life because implied in the testing process is a chance that we’ll fail. And, really, who wants to lose?
So the question is, “Does God test us?” Is He there laying traps ready to nap us by our dumb decisions and misguided choices?
Remember the parable of the talents? The master is going away for who knows how long and he chooses three of his most faithful servants and gives each of them responsibility over his assets. Well, two double their shares and one buries his in the ground.
When the master returns he says to the two and I paraphrase,
Hey, great job, since you figured out how to do something with a little I’m now going to give you a lot.”
What I find interesting in this story is what the third chap says to the master. Basically it’s something like this,
Well, I know you’re a hard-ass who uses people to make money. I didn’t want to mess up and get on your bad side so I buried your money. Here it is.”
There is a distinct difference in how the servants viewed their master and the situation. Two found an opportunity to TRAIN while the third saw it as a TEST.
Becoming a parent has opened my eyes to how God must see His children.
Do I lay traps to test my children? No. Do I intentionally train them? Yes. Has their responsibility grown in proportion to their ability to make good decisions? Yes. Do they make poor decisions? Yes. Do I love them anyway and help them to renegotiate the current situation? Yes.
Did good and faithful believers in the bible make bad decisions? Yes. Did God continue to protect them, provide for them, and deliver them from bad places? Yes, over, and over, and over.
We have a choice about how to perceive the situations in our lives. Will we choose, as the disgruntled servant did, to view our master as one who is laying traps to test us? Or, as the two who grabbed the opportunity to rock that which had been entrusted to them?
Matthew 25:21 and :24-25