THE TIMES WE DON’T KNOW ARE TESTS ARE THE BIGGEST TESTS!
Since I have been a student since I was 18, in the Air Force on active duty and married, I am constantly thinking of things in terms of tests. There’s really never been a time in my life that I wasn’t being evaluated. It makes me have extra compassion for my kids when I see them studying and working hard only to receive a not so exciting grade on a test or paper. I know what that feels like. There’s a Scripture in the Bible that talks about “much studying wearing the body.”
Ecc 12:12 Be warned, my son, of anything in addition to them. Of making many books there is no end, and much study wearies the body.
I can definitely say “Amen” to that! These experiences cause me to think of all things as potential tests of obedience from God and tests of my faith from the enemy. Not to say that all things are tests. Some things are simply opportunities that I have the free will to choose or not simply “just because.” Often, though, the biggest things that don’t even seem like tests are definitely “pass/fail” in life. For example, we recently joined a new church. I really wanted to get involved in a women’s Bible study so I could connect with these new women. I signed up for a Wednesday night study that would be focusing on Paul. I love Paul so I was thrilled.
Then, my teenage daughter’s work schedule changed. Turned out she would be home on Wednesday nights. In my heart, I knew I better stay home and be available should Faith want to talk. I’m learning that the less I talk, the more my daughter, Faith, talks. I knew I couldn’t afford to miss Wednesday night moments. My First Post in life is my family. I needed to honor my First Post.
Another example is in regard to my son, Jacob who is profoundly deaf but has a cochlear implant which enables him to hear, although not perfectly. We went to dinner the other night after one of Faith’s soccer games. It was a loud restaurant. They seated us in a very loud section where those of us without cochlear implants couldn’t even hear. My husband asked that they seat us in a more quite (although still loud) place. They did, but immediately, my husband, daughter and my daughter’s boyfriend became engaged in a conversation on the other side of the table. They were laughing really hard and I wanted to know what I missed. But at just that time, Jacob began talking to me. He had asked me to sit on the right side of him, the side of his cochlear implant.
He said, “Mom, I kinda had an interesting day today…” He went on to tell me how he got mostly A’s on tests, but he fell going up the stairs. The other three members of our dinner party continued to be in their own jovial place.
I kept trying to listen to both conversations then I realized,
“What am I doing?!” I need to listen to Jacob, have a conversation with Jacob, and make eye contact with him and truly be present. I would not want to feel dismissed by my mother at a restaurant with limited hearing!
I think in this situation, I started to fail the test, but recovered at the end and passed. Thank You, Holy Spirit, for convicting me in the midst of it all.
Are there things in your life that you are excelling at? Are there areas of improvement just calling your name to receive victory?
Kristina Seymour loves to encourage and equip women through the Word and through community. She is the author of The Warrior Mom Handbook, The Warrior Mom Leadership Manual, and The Warrior Wife Handbook; they are available at Amazon.com. Kristina's Bible studies are for women who desire to live by faith in the midst of their everyday lives. She has learned that women can't survive on caffeine and animal crackers alone; women in the Word and in community are united and able to stand firm. To learn more about Kristina, please visit her recently founded Share & Company Publishing House http://seymourkristina.wix.
Originally published Tuesday, 17 July 2018.