When I accepted Jesus Christ as my Lord and Savior in my sophomore year in college, I felt that there was a lot of catching up to my peers with my Bible knowledge. So many of my fellow brothers and sisters in the Lord had grown up in the Church, attended Sunday school, and had numerous Bible verses memorized. When I met with them, I felt like an unprepared student, walking into a classroom without reading the homework assignment. I was determined to remedy the situation and I utilized the only tools with which I was familiar. After a lifetime of schooling and studying, old habits die hard. I avidly read the Bible, commentaries, and expository works by noted Christian authors. I soon had book knowledge but lacked practical experiences. God had much more work to do in my life.
But he knows where I am going. And when he tests me, I will come out as pure as gold.
Job 23:10 (NLT)
It is instructive that Job spoke these words. Job was a great man of faith but God had much more work to do in his life. Job’s life was comfortable. He was one of the wealthiest men in the ancient world, blessed with seven sons and three daughters. He regularly prayed and sacrificed to God and considered himself a faithful worshiper of God. In a short period of time, Job would be tested by God, losing all of his wealth and children. Through these trials, Job’s faith was tested and refined.
Faith is not something that is studied; faith is only learned by living and living means being tested by the trials of life. I can’t study it! It is important to study the Bible and other resources, but I was using it as a substitute to learn to live by faith. God will continue to refine me through the trials of life, removing the dross and impurities, leaving pure gold!
Love and trust in the Lord; seek His will in your life.