So, I’m now on a new Beth Moore Bible study. As I’ve explained before, I can’t go to the women’s Bible studies at church because we are with the youth… so I choose Beth to teach me. We are best friends. Currently… I’m diving into this gem:
It’s good stuff… a journey through Genesis & beyond. I knew I needed it. Wednesday morning’s session was EXACTLY what I needed. As Jacob explained our latest with the adoption HERE, this week has been a bit rough for us. We were led to believe things that aren’t totally true and now have to wait MORE. Ugh. I’ve had to force myself several times to say and believe that God is ALWAYS good and ALWAYS faithful. We are being tested. PLEASE NOTE – God does test us. He does NOT tempt us. He tests us. As I am studying Abraham and the test God put him through asking him to sacrifice Isaac (Genesis 22), I see our current situation in it. I am NOT at all comparing our circumstance or lives to the magnitude or importance of Abraham and Isaac, but I can glean so much from his story and the implications for us… his descendants through Jesus Christ.
In the video session I watched… ol’ Beth spoke right to my heart. I believe, with all I am that God is testing the Morgans…
I hate tests… always have, and Jacob SURELY hates them. I’m pretty good at multiple choice tests, but essay/open-ended tests FREAK ME OUT. We are in an open-ended test right now… no blue print, no cheat sheet, no timeline, no due date… just a TEST. Ugh… Although the test talk isn’t fun, this stuff Beth talked about gave me HOPE and assurance. Maybe you’re in a test, too. Here are her points (bulleted):
- Our tests have our names on them.
Genesis 22 opens like this: Some time later God TESTED Abraham. He said to him, “Abraham!”… He called his name before He gave the instructions. God specifically plans our tests for us, as individuals. They have our names on them. Good thing – we don’t have to take other people’s tests. Bad thing – tests suck. BUT… our God is a GOOD teacher. Our tests have an INTENTIONAL purpose. They are for a reason. He tests us for results! They are all purpose-driven.
I feel like God is saying… “MORGANS!!!!” And all we can respond with, like Abraham, is “Here we are…”
The Hebrew word for tested means “to test, try, prove… Generally carries the idea of testing the QUALITY of someone or something through stressful circumstance.” Tests burn the FAKE out. God refines and fixes us through tests and trails. Ugh… (this word describes how I feel… so I will keep using it) So, what is the QUALITY of our faith? Our character? Our endurance? Maybe He wants us to see that we aren’t as weak as we think we are. Maybe He wants us to see that He is way stronger than we ever knew.
Sometimes we have to leave the classroom. How I wish I could just study and soak in His Word… and learn… and just be happy. God has so much more for us… but we have to get out of the classroom to REALLY learn. The Morgans are buckled up and ready for the field-trip I guess.
- Our hardest tests involve our dearest loves.
Yep… we’re there. How can you love a teenage boy in a different country SO much? I don’t know… but we do.
The Hebrew word for love means “to love, desire to delight… Implies an ardent and vehement/intense inclination of the mind and a tenderness of affection at the same time… a strong emotional attachment for and a desire to possess or be in the presence of the object of love. Yep… I’m there. I’m pretty darn intense about getting my boy home, but I love him to the core!
This adoption is by far the hardest test we’ve endured so far. So many what if’s, waiting, not knowing, hard conversations… it’s been so tough. Yes, I’m learning more than I would any other way… but it’s hard. It’s hard to respond to questions you don’t know the answer for. It’s hard to live while your mind and heart are miles away…
- We are not powerless in our tests. HOW we take them is entirely up to us. Abraham’s only recorded words to God in Genesis 22: “HERE I AM”
God does not FORCE us to cooperate with Him. He allows us to respond… it’s our choice. So I, daily, have to figure out HOW I am going to take the daily tests of waiting and trusting. Am I going to be defensive and rude when asked about WHEN and WHAT and HOW… or will I respond in love? Will I doubt and be angry with the Lord… or will I rest in His promises? Am I going to live in fear? Am I going to say He let me down? Am I going to proclaim that He is faithFUL when I am faithLESS? What am I going to do?
God knows His tests defy rational explanation or understanding. He urges us to believe that He can be trusted. Sometimes… I am just glad He knows that. You know the saying “God will only give you what you can handle”? That’s a lie. He gives us what urges us to grab on to Him for deaf life. He is trustworthy.
- Obedience is not the hardest part of our most trying tests. Keeping the faith can be hardest of all. Most of the time, we really believe that all things are possible with God that were already probable… we don’t believe He can do the impossible.
I agree. Deciding to adopt Eric was an easy decision… we fell in love with him the moment we talked with him. Continuing to trust and believe and depend… that’s hard. My faith took a huge turn 2 summers ago while going through another Beth Moore study “Believing God” (I told y’all I love her). It rocked my socks! I was forced to ask myself Do I REALLY believe Him? I know I believe IN Him, but do I ACTIVELY believe Him? My answer… after lots of sitting and pondering and studying was… YES! That YES! sent me and my hubs on a WHIRLWIND of true obedience… including our adoption. YES! I believe Him… I will forevermore BELIEVE Him. He has more than proven He is faithful… and I am so thankful that doesn’t change, but I, in my flesh, have a hard time keeping up my end of the deal. He is loyal… I am not.
I want to believe Him for the IMPOSSIBLE… not just the probable or the easy. He invites us to ask Him for the things unseen. I will…
At the end of the chapter, God says that He will bless Abraham, his offspring, and ALL the nations. WHY? Because Abraham obeyed God! Blessings (not always material stuff, people) come from our obedience. I want, more than anything, for my children and grandchildren to be blessed by God because we were obedient. That’s the legacy I want to leave…
- Like Abraham, we’re likely to discover, the harder the test, the further reaching the ramifications. Hard tests have HUGE effects. When God is up to something HARD, He is up to something BIG.
I know this 100%. Although our story doesn’t have the covenant power that came through the blessing of Abraham and Isaac, the story of Eric’s adoption has done some crazy things. This is NOT in any way to toot our horns… it’s all about Jesus and what He wants. He has allowed people to read/hear our story, be involved in getting him home, and see the power of God through all He’s done/doing.
Although we try not to get upset in front of very many people about our adoption or getting Eric home, it’s hard. We have known since day 1 God is up to something big… no doubt. He has done GREAT things… and He’s not done. This adoption… as with all adoptions and tests… is for greater purposes. It’s been full of tears, rejoicing, laughter, anxiety, mild-major heart attacks, good, bad, ugly, and beautiful.
God is up to something big!
So… if/when you go through a test… the one with your name on it… how are you going to respond? I beg you… even though it hurts… TRUST HIM! He is always good.