The Christian and Hard Times: Understanding the Role of Trials and Tests

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If only the Christian could learn the art of mastering trials, tests, and troubles! Do you ever wonder why God allows us to suffer? If He is loving and faithful, why are we expected to endure seemingly unnecessary trials and tests? Though there is no simple answer to these questions, we can discover some reasons for trials, tests, and troubles in the life of the Christian.

Before discussing these, we want to make one sure statement: The Christian who will embrace trials and tests as a part of the Christian experience will learn quickly how to navigate through them.

David declared in the Psalms that many are the afflictions of the righteous, but God delivers them out of them all. One main reason that God allows things to come our way is that He will bring us out of all of them. It is for this cause He allows us to go through some things, because He delights in showing His power. However, from biblical examples and exhortations, we can discover 3 benefits of trials and tests.

First, trials and tests come to produce reverence for God. They come into the lives of believers to produce a reverential fear of God. Nevertheless, this fear is to be coupled with humility. Trials, tests, and God’s subsequent deliverance from them, bring the believers into a personal encounter with God’s greatness and power.

Where there is no fear of God, people will not exercise restraint. Where there is no humility before God, there is no regard for His standards. Where there is no regard for His standards, there is no place of repentance, which leads to experiencing judgment at His return.

Second, trials and tests come to produce a faith-filled relationship. God allows believers to have trouble to produce faith and patience in them. When one experiences sickness and God heals him, faith is gained in that area. When one faces financial difficulties and the Lord provides, faith for finances is acquired.

Many believers do not submit to this process. Situations that are designed to produce faith have inadvertently produced disillusion and depression in some. Believers must realize that God is sovereign and will never forsake them.

Third, trials and tests surface to produce zeal for Christ. Believers experience trials, which should produce faith and not frustration. The remembrance of the trials and God’s subsequent deliverance should not produce anxiety. It should build a legacy of God’s love and concern for us.

When one understands the place of trials and tests, they will not spend time trying to escape these inevitabilities. Embrace your trials and tests knowing it will work for your good.

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