To be tested or not to be – that is the question

In general, most people do not like tests. All of us have grown up taking tests all our lives. Some people might have been tested even before they were born – in their mother’s womb. Otherwise, they might not have consented to be tested. So, if we are really given a choice, we would rather avoid taking tests.

Covid-19 has come upon us, and whether we like it or not, more tests are coming our way. Whether it is the ART or PCR or some future improved version of Covid-19 tests, they are coming straight on.

But tests, in general, are for our own good, just like good medicine. We question rather their necessity.

What if the test comes from God? However, let us take caution when faced with it.

Let no one say when he is tempted, “I am being tempted by God,” for God cannot be tempted with evil, and he himself tempts no one. But each person is tempted when he is lured and enticed by his own desire. (James 1:13-14)

But, rather

Count it all joy, my brothers, when you meet trials of various kinds, for you know that the testing of your faith produces steadfastness. (James 1:2-3)

Tests from God usually have their purposes and there would be lessons for us to learn.

Therefore thus says the LORD of hosts: “Behold, I will refine them and test them, for what else can I do, because of my people?” (Jeremiah 9:7)

“I the LORD search the heart and test the mind, to give every man according to his ways, according to the fruit of his deeds.” (Jeremiah 17:10)

The tests may be challenging and at times painful, but God is moulding us.

The crucible is for silver, and the furnace is for gold, and the LORD tests hearts. (Proverbs 17:3)

The crucible is for silver, and the furnace is for gold, and a man is tested by his praise. (Proverbs 27:21)

During the process, we could not wait for the tests to end. However, please be patient, for the outcome is sure.

In this you rejoice, though now for a little while, if necessary, you have been grieved by various trials, so that the tested genuineness of your faith—more precious than gold that perishes though it is tested by fire—may be found to result in praise and glory and honour at the revelation of Jesus Christ. (1 Peter 1:6-7)

While in this journey of various tests, you might want to do a self-assessment. Use this spiritual well-being assessment1 and see how you fare.

Ps Frankie Koh