God chastens those He loves (Hebrews 12:6). He can allow affliction to happen in our lives for a period of time for the purpose of chastening us. God knows how much we can handle and will not allow us to suffer beyond what we can bear (1 Corinth. 10:13).
To chasten means
– to correct by punishment or suffering.
– to have a restraining or moderating effect on.
The Holy Spirit as the power of God is able to manifest as the consuming fire of God to convict us when we sin for the purpose of refining us. When our sins are highlighted by God’s supernatural grace we have a choice to make; will we confess them before the Lord and to those we have wronged as well asking for forgiveness or ignore the Holy Spirit’s prompting which is for the purpose of cleansing us from all unrighteousness? To get our attention, sometimes God will allow suffering.
When the Israelites were in the wilderness, Moses said to them, “He [God] gave you manna to eat in the wilderness, something your ancestral had never known, to humble and to test you so that it might go well with you” (Deut. 8:16).
God could have given the children of Israel the type of bread or food they were familiar with, but He chose to give them manna, the miraculous “bread of heaven”, a small round substance which tasted like nothing they had ever eaten before (Ps. 78:24, Ex. 16:14,31).
At times the Lord will allow us into territories or places we are unfamiliar with or undergo experiences we have never had before for the purpose of us being humbled and tested, so that “in the end” it might go well with us.
If you have something so precious to you, will you be willing to give it away if God asks you to? Abraham was tested after God gave him Isaac, his much awaited son. God told him to kill Isaac and Abraham did not hesitate, he went ahead to make the preparations. God however stopped Abraham just before he killed Isaac and provided a ram to replace him. As a result of Abraham’s obedience, God’s covenant blessings to him and his descendants were confirmed by God (Gen. 22:1-18).
This ought to encourage us to surrender all to the Lord sacrificially, because His principles are to reward those who diligently seek Him and to cause us to reap what we sow for His sake. God is always searching for those who will make a choice to be fully committed to Him regardless of the circumstances, in other words in good times or in times of hardship or affliction. Being fully committed to the LORD means allowing chastening and being quick to acknowledge and confess our sins. In addition, we are willing to live sacrificially or forgo what pleases us for what pleases God.
My prayer is that we will respond daily to God’s plans to humble and test us so that it will always be well with us.
Today, dear brothers and sisters, let us also remember the Apostle James’ counsel to us:
“Count it all joy, my brothers when you fall into various temptations,knowing that the testing of your faith produces endurance.Let endurance have its perfect work, that you may be perfect and complete, lacking in nothing” (James 1:2-4 KJV).
You are blessed, determine to stay blessed.
©Deborah E. Nyamekye 30/11/2015
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