I cannot recommend strongly enough the book I am reading aloud with my boys each morning... Practical Happiness by Bob Shultz.
Again and again he delves deep and reveals treasures of wisdom gleaned from years of walking with God.
This morning's lesson was on TESTS.
Test anxiety is so prevalent in our society.
In fact, it dominates lives more than you would think..even the ones who are seemingly passing with flying colours.
Shultz told his children from the age of 7 upwards:
"I don't care if you flunk the test. It doesn't matter to me if you miss every problem. The important thing is that you have a good time. Go and enjoy it!"
No parent I know, including myself, gives that pep talk on test day.
So what makes this so powerful a concept?
Life's lessons 101.
Accurate tests reveal truth.
In order for test anxiety to be wiped out: I can't be afraid about what the test reveals about me.
On what planet?????
A poor score simply means I either need more study/input/wisdom or a lesson/insight on how to take/approach/walk through, a test.
Shultz goes on to state:
" Results are not important: if you don't like tests you won't enjoy life."
Tests reveal the truth about you.
We Christians claim to love truth.
CLAIM. To LOVE. The TRUTH.
( Practical application of above principle..optional..read the fine print.)
It is easy to love the truth when you can do something with ease...
...but what about when you can't?
How do you feel then?
"How can you love truth and like tests when they reveal your ignorance or your faults... How can you like tests that reveal your shortcomings? The answer is simple: Learn to love truth. Love it no matter how it makes you look. Love it regardless of where it may lead you. You will find freedom as you learn to love truth."
I know that pride avoids both tests and truth.
People would rather lie to look special than face the reality of being average or uneducated/unknowing.
Loving the truth sets me free to the point where I welcome tests even as they expose me...the real me. Being open and transparent is all I have time for these days..open ignorance and weaknesses can be overcome...hidden ignorance festers and remains and corrupts.
This is soooooo where I want to live and move and have my very existence.
In him...in the WAY...the TRUTH... the LIFE.
It is impossible for me to gain wisdom..while remaining deliberately ignorant through fear of exposure.
I am finding that the daily tests I face...moment by moment, hour by hour, reveal two very important things:
1. I need God
2. God is willing to meet my need
Again Shultz declares:
"Every trial, test and trouble you face is a friend declaring the truth about yourself and God, about your need and his ability to meet that need."
Thanks be to GOD! Who always causes us to triumph.. through Christ Jesus!
Hindsight is 20/20, so they say...and for once..they are right.
It is not until I SEE..until I actually open my eyes to the fact that trials..tests etc are the pathway..the narrow way that leads to knowing and trusting God.
When I don't see things this way..I live irritated..and in a victim state...and I stop seeing God as good and start looking for ways to perform.. so he will BLESS me and get things back in my comfort zone....my idea of the "succesful christian life".
I know for a fact that I can't love God without knowing him...and I can't know him without experiencing him...
DO NOT FEAR.
The tests are not enemies.
They are friends.
Love God. ( one and the same)
Love the true you...God does.
"But we glory in tribulations also: knowing that tribulation works patience; and patience, experience; and experience, hope: and hope makes not ashamed; because the love of God is shed abroad in our hearts by the Holy Spirit which is given to us."