The Test of Time

Sometimes it’s hard to put into words what you are thinking. In my journey of walking with God I thought about three tests that we maybe have to successfully navigate – the divine test, the sacrifice test and the test of time.

It is often said that it’s not how you start but how you finish that really counts. I think there may be some truth in that when it comes to our walk with God. His desires is for us to walk with Him ALL the days of our lives not just some.

He loves us unconditionally, just a I do as dad with my girls. I also think, that just like me as a dad who loves it when my girls want to hang out with me, walk with me and enjoy my company, God feels the same. He loves it when we begin walking with Him and He loves it when we continue to choose to walk with Him.

When reading the Bible it’s easy to see many who start well but finish poorly. Abraham is one of the few who started and finished well. He demonstrates that great relationships, like that between him and God, stand the test of time and are the better for it.

For those who finished badly, maybe time created space for distractions. The day in, day out aspect of keeping the principles God became less important, in contrast to their own ideas of what would be best. Time with God alone seemed to satisfy less. Personally, I don’t want that to happen.

I look at my relationships, some have been friends for over 20 years and I see that the test of time is passed by allowing time to work in our favour. Time can bring strength to relationships that other things cannot.

Time creates shared experiences, a lifetime of memories. We have moved on from simple conversations to knowing one another instinctively.

Time can smooth out the rough edges. Acquiring an understanding of what makes us each other tick, our unique personalities, means we know sometimes we will get it wrong and that’s alright. Time isn’t just a healer for us, instead, it has given us permission to be who we really are with those closest to us.

Time builds connections between people that are hard to break. We are loyal, we love each other, not in a soppy way but with a strength that comes from a trust only earned and nurtured over time. Newcomers find that hard to compete with but it can’t be helped. However, the good thing is, it means we will probably demonstrate the same qualities with others too.

Whether with God or with friends, the test of time cannot be avoided. Best just decide to make the most of it, work hard and build a relationship with both God and man that will bless all involved.

Passing the Divine Test

It’s already March. This years focus for me as I read my Bible is ‘walking with God’. I am identifying phrases, thoughts, observing the people in the Bible and how God spoke to them, through them, journeyed with them as they endeavoured to walk with Him.

Our relationship with God needs to pass the divine test.
Simple: when walking with God, trust God.
Challenge: it never seems that simple

Abraham got there, eventually. He made sure his relationship with God passed the divine test but not straight away. When the promise given wasn’t coming he and Sarah created their own solution. God is gracious, and I am thankful for that. If we are honest, we have probably all done that at some point. It doesn’t mean we don’t love God, it maybe just demonstrates our inability at time to allow God to be divine, for the providence of God to play out.

In Genesis 17 the instructions and benefits to Abraham were a simple reminder…
Walk before God.
Blameless, upright.
The covenant between us will be established.

Abrahams response was simple…
To recognise God as Sovereign.
To fall facedown, prostrate before the Lord.
To give due honour, reverence, respect.
To see God as divine and able, despite his own view on his circumstances.

That’s the divine test.

Whose word will we hold on to?
Whose promises will we stand on?
Are our words divine or Gods words divine?

I am learning as I walk with God to listen more closely to the words coming from God. Then, according to His word, I will be established, His promises can come to pass, I gain right-standing with Him and my faith in Him is, like Abraham, accounted to me as righteousness.

My simple prayer is this:
Lord, be divine in my life. In word, in deed, in rule. Have your way in my life, in all things, even when I don’t understand what you are doing. Let my faith in you be strong, sure and steadfast, knowing that you always have an eye on the bigger picture of my life.

How would you say your relationship does in regards to the divine test?