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Times of testing

February 10, 2010

Have you noticed that when everything is sailing along, it’s easy – almost fun – to look at stories of believers and their trials and just nod approvingly of those who do well? And sigh at those who waiver?

“If”s are so easy. And from the backseat, everyone’s a good driver. And from the couch, everyone’s a good referee. And from the pew, everyone’s a compassionate pastor.

It’s easy to sit in the theater chair and be sensible. It’s easy to curl up with a book and know better. It’s easy to watch a sitcom and think, “I would …”

But what was it like to be “Abraham” (“the father of many nations”) with an old, barren wife? How confusing must it have been to be “king over Israel,” and also be a hunted man hiding out in a cave? What did it feel like to hear an angel call you “highly favored” one day, and the next day hear your neighbors calling for your execution? And what goes through your mind at the precise second that your body weight shifts from the foot in the boat to the foot over the water?

Before the pregnancy. Before the victory. Before the birth. Before the miracle.

We know the ends of these stories, and it makes for casual reading and cute bed-time stories. It’s easy to flip those pages and recognize the right answers, jot them down or commit them to memory, and assure ourselves that, “I would …”

Solomon probably thought, “I would …” Judas most likely promised himself, “I would …”

Which character am I? Which one are you? A year from now will you look back on today’s trials and think, “I could have handled that better.”? Will I?

Does Solomon?

Does Mary?

Or will we look back on these trials and recognize Abraham’s faith in ourselves?

We hope the later, but have you  noticed it’s not always as easy as it reads?

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3 Comments leave one →
  1. marikrauss permalink
    February 10, 2010 6:01 pm

    I need a “like” button for this post.

  2. February 11, 2010 7:57 am

    yes! great post!

    “And from the backseat, everyone’s a good driver. And from the couch, everyone’s a good referee. And from the pew, everyone’s a compassionate pastor.” – nicely worded.

    it got me thinking: and from within the harvest, everyone’s a generous giver. and from standing over the woman laying in the dirt with stones in your hands, everyone’s perfectly faithful.

    and yes, i have noticed, it’s not always as easy as it reads…i am prone to wander, LORD i feel it!

    but praise be to GOD who redeems, restores, and resurrects; who has saved and yet is always saving :]

  3. Lex permalink
    February 11, 2010 10:28 am

    Thanks, peeps. I pray I can keep my own advice. ;)

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