Listen to this devotional:
Listen while you read: "Tis So Sweet To Trust In Jesus"1 (Lyrics)
It seems that our world has become submerged in a pandemic of scientific theories, all promising hope for an unrelenting virus. How many of those theories have been proven? That's a big question! Only rigorous testing through time and experience can reveal which theories prove to be true and which don't.
That applies not only to the field of science, but also the field of theology. By "theology", I'm referring to belief claims about God and His ways — specifically those that you and I hold within us. That's our personal theology, flaws and all.
The question is: How much of our personal theology is unproven theory in our minds? How much have we proven to be true by testings through time and experience? What's still theory and what's now proof for us? This makes a vast difference in our faith maturity — as it did for ancient Israel.
That nation was submerged in an epidemic of theological theory, a mixed quagmire of beliefs. True, God's faithfulness was well-proven and documented by their ancestors. But now God wanted it to be more than hazy theory in their lives. He wanted His truths to be living proof — right now. So God said, "Prove Me now!" If they were willing to trust and obey Him, they would experience astounding proof of His promised love. It's true for us, too!
Malachi 3:10 – Bring ye all the tithes into the storehouse, that there may be meat in mine house, and prove me now herewith, saith the Lord of hosts, if I will not open you the windows of heaven, and pour you out a blessing, that there shall not be room enough to receive it. (KJV)
- But we never can prove the delights of His love
Until all on the altar we lay;
For the favour He shows and the joy He bestows,
Are for them who will trust and obey.
– John Henry Sammis (1846-1919)
To "prove" means to test, examine, approve, deem worthy, or scrutinize for genuineness. Proving God's faithfulness is like proving a gem's genuineness. Oh, what joy is ours when, through the testings of time and experience, we've proven God to be authentic.
Proven faith is not easily lost. Proven faith emboldens us in future trials. It keeps us persevering when we would otherwise flee. Perseverance, in turn, produces further proof of God's faithfulness.
James 1:2-4 – Consider it pure joy, my brothers, whenever you face trials of many kinds, because you know that the testing of your faith produces perseverance. Perseverance must finish its work so that you may be mature and complete, not lacking anything. (NIV)
I say, let's not be so anxious to see difficulties eradicated. View them as God's testing plots arranged for us. It's where our wavering beliefs can be transformed into living proof of God's faithfulness. And that's worth it all, is it not? That's how we can sing with joy:
- Jesus, Jesus, how I trust Him!
How I've proved Him o'er and o'er;
Jesus, Jesus, precious Jesus!
Oh, for grace to trust Him more!
– Louisa M. R. Stead (1850-1917)
Prayer: Lord, give us courage and patience to prove You. In turn, we ask You to prove us! Reveal whatever is false. "Examine me, O Lord, and prove me; try my mind and my heart." (Psalm 26:2 NKJV) Amen.