Each one of us whether we are a Christian or not go through periods or seasons of testing; this is a fact of live. In the same way a gardener regularly cause his/her plants to undergo seasonal pruning to blossom and bear more fruit, the Lord likewise sometimes allows us to go through seasons of pruning. These seasons of testing are crucial to our spiritual growth. Jesus said to his disciples, “I am the true vine, and my Father is the gardener. He cuts off every branch in me that bears no fruit, while every branch that does bear fruit he prunes so that it will be even more fruitful.” John 15:1-2
During these times of testing we may feel like God as forgotten us and that we are not able to bear what we are going through; however, God will never put us in the pit without a way out. Job faced a similar situation when he said, “Behold, I go forward, but he is not there; and backward, but I cannot perceive him: On the left hand, where he doth work, but I cannot behold him: he hideth himself on the right hand, that I cannot see him: But he knoweth the way that I take: when he hath tried me, I shall come forth as gold.”- Job 23:8-10
Despite how Job felt and regardless of how it looked like God was not there, Job knew that what he was facing is just a season of God pruning or testing him and that when God is finish with him he would come out as pure gold. The bible say that, “No temptation has overtaken you except such as is common to man; but God is faithful, who will not allow you to be tempted beyond what you are able, but with the temptation will also make the way of escape, that you may be able to bear it.”- 1 Corinthians 10: 13
Consider: Before gold can become precious metals that we crave for it must first go through the fire, not only through the fire but it MUST BE PLACE IN THE VERY DEPT OF THE FIRE! Nothing good ever comes without a price, the same is true for your anointing and your spiritual growth. If you want to be great in this life and in the kingdom of God there is a price you have to pay. However, God promised that even when you are in the fire he will be with you. When the 3 Hebrew boys, Shadrach, Meshach, and Abed-Nego (Daniel 3:8-25), got thrown in the fire even though it was heated 7 times hotter than normal, no harm came to them because God was with them.
Seasons of Testing
So if you are going through your season of testing or trials, perhaps your wondering…..
What is God Doing?
- Helping you to develop skills you will need in the future
Joseph knew that his destiny was one of leadership, but it seemed that his life was going off course without any hope of ever getting better. However, during the time of slavery and unjust imprisonment he developed skills that would be invaluable to his future. He learnt the Egyptian language and customs, along with principles of stewardship, leadership and resource management.
During your seasons of testing or trials, God may be working gifts and skills into your life that you need to fulfill His destiny in the long run.
- Making you into a better person by refining your character
During wilderness times, the people and circumstances that try us are instruments that God uses to develop our character and point us towards our destiny. Joseph understood this. He later said to his brothers, “You intended to harm me, but God intended it for good to accomplish what is now being done, the saving of many lives” (Gen 50:20).
During the season of trial, God is working gifts and skills into your life that you need to fulfil His destiny in the long run.
During your seasons of testing or trials, God is working gifts and skills into your life that you need to fulfil His destiny in the long run.
- Moving us into a different direction
During a testing time, God may actually be repositioning us for a new season of fruitfulness. Elijah went on the run from Jezebel, overnight going from success to mess. The man who stood up to the prophets of Baal and an entire nation was now running for his life because Jezebel threatens to kill him. He sat under a tree in the desert and actually prayed that he would die. The Lord visited Him and gave him directions for a new season of his ministry. He was to call Elisha as his successor and anoint a new king who would bring Jezebel’s reign to an end.
It was while Elijah was in the wilderness that he got new direction for his ministry. What new season of growth does God wants to reposition you into? During the times of difficulty or separation, allow Him to speak to you about the next season He has for your life.
- Our seasons of testing may be a method God uses to draw us closer to him
Sometimes God will throw us into the fire so that we may seek him more. At times we can get so caught up with the affairs of this world and spend less time with God; God is a jealous God and will therefore do something to get our attention.
“You should know in your heart that as a man chastens his son, so the Lord your God chastens you”- Deuteronomy 8:5
The Lord knows what best for us and where he wants to take us and if he is not satisfy with where you are spiritually, he will at times put us in some tough situation to get our attention.
- God is using our seasons of testing to bring us into our purpose
At times we may feel as though we are not able to make it another step as our situation may seem too overbearing; but God says you shall come out of this stronger and better. God is moving to change the scenery on the stage of your life—positioning circumstances, others and us for what is to come. He is getting ready to move you into your destiny. For the plan God has for your life at times he has to put us into the valley before he can put us on the mountain top.
David went on the run from Saul in the wilderness. He was destine to become a king, but he became an outlaw first. He stayed in the desert while God worked things out on his behalf. Saul died and eventually the people called for David to be their new king.
- God will use seasons of testing to strengthen your Faith
Abraham, known as the ‘father of faith’ was told by God that he will bless him with a child and He will make him the father of a great nation. However, there was a very big problem, Sarah, Abraham’s wife, was barren and they both wasn’t getting any younger. It was twenty-five barren years before Isaac was born in fulfillment of God’s promise to give Abraham a son; God waited until it was physically impossible to do what modern science says is impossible. Paul later in one of his letters to the Roman brethren said of Abraham:
“Without weakening in his faith, he faced the fact that his body was as good as dead—since he was about a hundred years old—and that Sarah’s womb was also dead. Yet he did not waver through unbelief regarding the promise of God, but was strengthened in his faith and gave glory to God. (Rom 4:19-20)
It is in our seasons of testing that God will do some of his greatest work in our lives.
- God is using our seasons of testing to empower us for greatness
The children of Israel walk 40 years in the wilderness as a part of God testing them to know what was in their heart and if they would obey his commandments (Deuteronomy 8: 1-3). Likewise, the Lord will bring us into our wilderness experience(s) so that he may try to prove us. What trials you encounter will depend on where he wants to take you and what lessons he want you to learn.
David although he was anointed to be king became a fugitive and being hunted in the wilderness by the very one he sought to serve, Saul. However, what David went through for over 12 years was a part of God’s plan. God has a plan for each one of us and most times what we go through is a part of his ultimate plan for us. The season in the wilderness honed David’s leadership skills. It also developed his character, tried his faith, and positioned him for what was to come.
No matter what you face, remember that God is with you and will bring you through it. Every experiences written in the bible was written for our learning so that we may grow and or learn from their examples.The season in the wilderness honed David’s leadership skills. It also developed his character, tried his faith, and positioned him for what was to come.
I want to end by saying that at no time WILL GOD EVER TEMPT YOU TO DO EVIL. The bible says,
“When tempted, no one should say, “God is tempting me.” For God cannot be tempted by evil, nor does he tempt anyone;”-James 1:13
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