I was never a crammer when it came to finals as a student. I preferred preparing a little bit every day and then reviewing right before the test came. Consequently, I wasn’t really stressed while taking the test. Although that wasn’t necessarily always the case when the grade came back!

Testing is part of the Christian walk. As a follower of Jesus Christ, I know that He will test me, my faith, and my lifestyle on a regular basis. God came to Abraham when he was around 118 years old and the bible says, “God tested Abraham”.  Surely, one would believe that the tests of the past in this patriarch’s life would be enough to show God his dedication and love.  You just never know.  God came to him with the ultimate test. Will you sacrifice your son, your only son, the one whom you love…? That was the challenge.

Linda and I sat together in the Cancer Care Wing of Beaumont Hospital in Royal Oak, Michigan a few weeks ago. We already knew the answer before the test results returned. Linda would be diagnosed with breast cancer. So we prayed. This is a test. It is a test of Linda’s resolve regarding her immovable love for Jesus Christ. It is a test for me as I prayerfully watch my bride of 42 years go through days of pain, nausea, and other, yet to be experienced, difficulties.

We already knew the answer before the test results returned. So we prayed.

No matter what, we will pass the tests.  How can I be so confident? It is not my confidence that will see me through, nor Linda’s strength. We both know that victory does not come by our might or power, but by His Spirit. The Spirit of God will give us the joy of the Lord and that will be our strength.  Do we want total healing?  Of course. We were created to live!  And to that end we will pray without ceasing, remembering this is a test, just a test.  Life goes on.  We will continue to present our bodies as living sacrifices unto the Lord. It is the least we can do. And until that appointment with glory reaches its moment of fulfillment, we will trust in the Lord and call upon Him in our day of trouble for the healing that is ours in Christ Jesus.

I’m glad I’ve had a faithful God for all these years! I haven’t had to cram knowledge of Him into my brain right before the test. Linda and I have been preparing. We accept the test and look forward to the victory.  The secret is to prepare every day, for every day His mercies are new.  Praise the Lord!

Wally

Dr. Wally Hostetter is a co-pastor at Mount Pleasant Community Church.