Same, familiar trouble

Dear Lord, hear my soul. Dear soul focus on your Lord. The same Lord who rescued Israel from Pharoah with wonders and miracles. The same Lord who hid Moses in a crag in a mountain and proclaimed your name. The Lord, gracious and compassionate.

I come for mercy and compassion. The same struggles and trouble has reached me. You prepared me for these and determined before eternity that I would face these trials. You tell me that we must face many troubles in order to enter the kingdom of heaven.

These are tests in preparation for eternity. And my struggles pail in comparison with being sawed in two, flogged, disowned, crucified, shipwrecked, stoned or beaten. You have sent unkind words and heartless actions to test me. When I fail, as the result of testing shows weakness, you burn away my impurity as I take shelter in your words. The tests of men prove strength and mastery. Testing from God shows weakness and depravity. The results of performing well on the tests of men are success, promotions, and recognition. The results of testing from you proves sin utterly sinful, horrifying, and evil and leads us to hell. Your tests confirm your holiness, holy.

Dear Lord, for your sake remember the prayer Jesus prayed for us before he was crucified. Remember that he told us you would never leave us as orphans. Remember me in grace. Remember me in mercy and not as I am. Test me and see that I have failed each and everyone of your tests. Test me again and see that I am no longer judged as a failure, but righteous because of what you accomplished for me in Jesus. For I am not ashamed of the gospel, because it is the power of God for all who believe.

So, send me tests. Let me rise to them in Christ, but catch me when I fail. Teach me through these compassion for those you’ve determined to be the proctors of these tests. Help me to avoid being surprised at their reappearance in shifting forms. Collect me for you when this is over. You, my dear Lord and Savior, are all about the end game. Please bring those who you’ve chosen before the creation of time to it’s culmination. What a day that will be.

My soul rejoices in these thoughts because I know they are true and trustworthy because they are based on the clear, full Word of God. My bible. Your words.

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