Tried, Proven, and Used
According to scripture, anyone used by God will first be tested- in an number of ways and a number of times.
In Matthew 4, Jesus Himself was tried, was proven, and was able to overcome. The Spirit of God led Jesus into the wilderness in order that He be tested. What did the test consist of? The temptations of the devil. This event is also documented in Luke 4. I would recommend that you read both passages.
Anytime the devil tempts us to do wrong, the Lord can use it as a test to prove where we are spiritually. There are a number of tests we will have to pass before we can graduate to greater things in God. Some tests will be given over and over at various times throughout our lives.
- We must pass the love test. This one is huge. Can we love those who do not love us or treat us well? Can we love in the midst of hard times and stress?
- Then there's the money test. We will be tried in how we handle money. Will we tithe and give, no matter the financial circumstances? Will we save any money or will we spend it all? Will we give to others, especially when it involves a sacrifice?
- We must pass the mercy and grace test, which checks to see if we will extend the same mercy and grace to others that Jesus has extended to us. Will we be kind or hard on them?
- Don't forget about the trust test. Will we trust God in all situations, particularly when life seems unfair or we don't understand what is going on?
These are just some of the tests we all must pass. The testing of our faith and our character proves to ourselves, our fellow man, and to God if we can be trusted. James 1:2-4 (NIV) explains.
Consider it pure joy, my brothers and sisters, whenever you face trials of many kinds, because you know that the testing of your faith produces perseverance. Let perseverance finish its work so that you may be mature and complete, not lacking anything.
According to I Timothy 3:10 (NIV), leaders in the church must also go through testing.
They must first be tested; and then if there is nothing against them, let them serve as deacons.
As we pass our tests over and over again, we are proven fit for the Master's use, like vessels of honor. As we continue to follow the Lord and seek His will and ways, we will pass the tests we encounter and will be used by Him in greater and greater ways. Don't get discouraged by the trials you face, pass your tests and you will be promoted into greater levels of usefulness for the Kingdom of God.
Will you be a vessel of honor; tried, proven, and useful for the Master, or a vessel of dishonor; cracked, broken and unfit? The choice is yours.