December 4, 2019

Every morning when I wake up,  I pray before doing anything else. Sometimes I pray while still lying in my bed; sometimes I pray while sitting up on the side of my bed.  But I pray.  Like most people, I pray for many things – my health, welfare of family and friends, wisdom, material needs, ability to follow God, and more.

But one of the things I pray for most is for God to help me examine myself. Life is full of tests – commandments from God to fulfill our assignments: be a good citizen, parent and grandparent, spouse, brother or sister, etc.  All of these things are tests.  And I ask God, “Am I passing my tests?”

Testing is what leads to competency, quality and satisfaction.

This is true not only in human life, but throughout the world in so many things. Business is a good example. Would you want to be a passenger on an airplane that had not been adequately and thoroughly tested?  Or the pilot tested for his competency?  Would you even buy a computer that had not been tested, or a car that was not tested?

Look at medicine. Would you want a doctor who had not been trained to treat you?  Or would you take medicine that had not been tested? Of course not, on any of these examples.

So wouldn’t you think it’s fair for God to test us? To examine us?

I want to please God. I want to hear Him someday say to me, “Well done, my good servant. You have been faithful…..”

That’s why I examine myself daily. Particularly my Christian faith and actions.

There are so many great stories in the Bible about people’s faith being tested and examined – the woman who had been sick twelve years with a blood problem; the crippled beggar who was laid daily at the gate Beautiful; blind Bartimaeus; the man with the withered hand; the ten lepers; Zacchaeus; the woman Jesus met at Jacob’s well; Nicodemus. Even Old Testament stories relate the testing of great people like Job, Abraham, Joseph, Moses, Daniel. There are literally hundreds of inspiring stories about people who were tested.  Their obedience to God and their faith always prevailed. The Bible teaches that God is no respecter of persons. He will help you prevail and be victorious over your tests, too.

One time I critically and honestly examine myself is when I am preparing to take Holy Communion –  the Eucharist.

The Apostle Paul, in 1 Cor. 11:28, says, “Let a man examine himself before taking of this meal.”

He furthermore says that if a person takes this meal unworthily that he could get sick or even die.  That’s a strong motive to examine oneself.

On our own merits, none of us are worthy to celebrate Holy Communion. But we do so because at the same time we celebrate and observe the sacrifice of Jesus who died on that cross.  For us!

Ask God to help you examine yourself; to show you your shortcomings.  Then ask him to help you become strong enough, faithful enough, to do what He wants you to do and to be.

God Bless You,
Spencer Plumley