The Testing of our Faith

My brethren, count it all joy when you fall into various trials, knowing that the testing of your faith produces patience.
— James 1:2-3

All the time God is building character. Trials are not bad; they are simply the way God tests our faith to purify it. Gold is His goal. He wants our trust to grow deeper, fuller, and more consistent. He is working in us the kind of faith that simply trusts even when there is no evidence in our circumstances to say we should trust. We go through times when we feel nothing and all we have left to trust in is what God has said. One day you wake up and for no apparent reason you feel different. “Does God love me anymore?” “Lord, where have You gone?” “Have You deserted me?” Why don't I feel You around any more?" Our feelings may be gone, but God is not. He has promised, “I will never leave you nor forsake you.” (Heb 13:5) This is the time of testing – the time for faith and standing on the Word of God. There is a level of faith and trust that can come no other way. Those who rely upon experiences alone, fail when times of testing come. If your faith is based on His Word – on the never failing promises of God – and not on fluctuating feelings dependant upon circumstances, you will stand!

Trials increase our dependence upon God. In that way they help build our faith. They force us to face our weakness and inability and then they drive us to God. Can we rejoice? Can we, “count it all joy?” Can we be thankful for whatever has been the means of our seeking God more fully? Trials are more evidence that God is working in our lives. He is working His glory into you. Trust Him! Stand on His promises even when you do not feel His Presence. Are you convinced there is a God in Heaven who is full of mercy and compassion? He has a purpose. We follow Jesus because it is right. Our trials do not make it any less so. One of the signs of a maturing Christian is the way he approaches trials and tribulations. Be patient! Endure! Exercise faith! “Let patience have its perfect work, that you may be perfect and complete, lacking nothing.” (James 1:4)

- From Study #5170