Matthew 4:1
Then was Jesus led up of the Spirit into the wilderness to be tempted of the devil.

Are you willing to be tested?

I am reminded of the story of Jonah and the big fish. There is one scripture that really stands out.

Jonah 1:17 Now the LORD had prepared a great fish to swallow up Jonah. And Jonah was in the belly of the fish three days and three nights. (KJV)

God was prepared for Jonah’s response because He is omniscient. He is also prepared for your responses. He made you and knows your thoughts. Nothing you do comes as a surprise to Him.

Psalm 139:1-4 O Lord, you have searched me [thoroughly] and have known me. 2 You know when I sit down and when I rise up [my entire life, everything I do]; You understand my thought from afar. 3  You scrutinize my path and my lying down, And You are intimately acquainted with all my ways. 4 Even before there is a word on my tongue [still unspoken], Behold, O Lord, You know it all. (Amplified Bible)

Because He loves you and has a plan for your life, He sets up trials you must face. If Jesus has to be tested, then why not you?

Hebrews 5:8 Although He was a Son [who had never been disobedient to the Father], He learned [active, special] obedience through what He suffered. (Amplified Bible)

Your desire may be to have a blessing filled life without hardship or issue. You are not alone. My Father used to say you want to “live your life on flowery beds of ease”. This is not how life is now, even though it is how God designed it.

Job 14:1-2 “Man, who is born of a woman, Is short-lived and full of turmoil. 2 Like a flower he comes forth and withers; He also flees like a shadow and does not remain”. (Amplified Bible)

Armed with this knowledge, be ready for war. You also have to learn to be obedient through the things that you will suffer.

Please agree with me as I pray:

Father, I repent for taking so long to say these words, “Thank You for every opportunity You provided for me to grow.” Though I can say them now because You helped me understand I have to go to through some tough times; they are still hard words to say. I don’t want to go through even though I know it’s necessary. I have asked You several times, is there another way for me to learn this? Your word says whom You love, You chasten. You will chastise me because of the choices I make that do not please You. Those choices can be deliberate or innocent mistakes. Your chastising makes me better because Your word also says when the testing is done, I will be perfect, entire, and wanting nothing. One reason You keep me close is because You love me. I want to believe another reason is because I make You laugh as I try to come up with ways to escape my times of testing and the chastisement for my wrong choices. Thank You for loving me enough to chastise me. Thank You for not moving the mountains. Through Your chastisement, I gain the strength to climb them…

———- Ask the Lord what He wants to say to you about today’s devotional and journal His response as described here.

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