Audio version read by Rev. Steven Lane Taylor, B.Msc. – Being Spiritually Tested
Have you ever felt that you were being spiritually tested? It is not uncommon for a person to sense that they are being put to the test spiritually by a divine power, or God. As in blaming one’s karma for making something happen, so too, for many, being spiritually tested seems to offer a rational explanation for an occurrence in their lives.
Given a broad definition of spiritual testing, there is no doubt that everyone is tested—perhaps many times during the course of their life. And given that God created human life, then God created the human psyche to be involved in the experience of testing. Testing is indeed of great importance, for it allows you to evaluate yourself.
God already knows where you stand when it comes to the state or condition of your soul! Testing can be to inform you of your standing on the spiritual ladder of enlightenment and spiritual self-mastery. Testing can be God’s way of providing you with an experience to stimulate you to self-examination.
A positive response by you to such self-examination may prove to be the stimulus needed to propel you into a new cycle of positive growth. When viewed in this fashion, every testing period—even when very difficult—can be a Godsend in disguise.
Look back over your own life when you have gone through difficult periods that caused you to question whether you were being tested. Are you able to see how such troubling periods may have resulted in your growth? Can you see that in the years thereafter you were better able to cope with and handle subsequent difficult cycles? Do you see how you were able to make better use of positive cycles when they occurred as a result of what you had learned during the testing cycles?
One of the great tests that many people face in their lives is that of living in the past. Living in the past can signify reliving memories—good, bad, or both—rather than living in the present and gearing up for the future. Good memories may be of a time when life seemed happier—where there may have been more love, success, material possessions, income, and better health. Bad memories may include a loss, emotional hurt, injustice, and the like. Whether good, bad, or a combination of the two, living in past memories freezes one in the past, rather than allowing one to live up to one’s potential in the present and the future.
Letting go of the past can be one of the great tests of one’s life. In some people, it may require all the inner spiritual power they can muster to break from the past. If you feel that your mind and emotions are frozen back in time, and thus you are less able to live in and handle the present and future, it would behoove you to pass the test of letting go of the past. Where you feel intellectually or emotionally incapable of making a break with the past, call on God’s Power within you to give you the spiritual power of healing to do so. It is hard to function productively in the present while carrying the weight of the past on your mental shoulders.
Something most people are tested on continually is being honest or truthful. Deception is so much a part of modern day life that its prevalence may be misconstrued by many to be acceptable behavior. Spiritually, the person you deceive most when you use deception is yourself! Whatever you gain for the moment is insignificant in contrast to what you lose in the long-term. For each time a person deceives, they chip away at their soul.
Christ said, “What profiteth a man if he gains the world and loseth his soul?” Dishonesty will corrupt your soul, and thus weaken you. Suffering such weakness, you become less able to handle things in the future, whether in matters of love, income, health, or other major concerns.
Many people living in fear are unable to meet the test of finding the courage to change things to improve their lives. Every time you back away from something or someone because of fear, you fail to meet the test of being courageous. Courage comes when you can set aside the personal ego where fear lives, and replace it with a crowning moment of God-given courage. Whatever fear you may have, fill your consciousness with the knowledge that the Presence of God is there with you as you meet and conquer this fear head-on. Dwell in God’s Presence and God will provide you with the courage you need. Turn over the test to God within, and God will take over by intuitively guiding you in what to do to pass the test.
Whatever the test, when you become aware that you are being tested, stop your thoughts for a few moments, become reflective, and declare or affirm that God’s Presence within you will show you the positive side of whatever is taking place. Look to God’s Presence within you to give you the wisdom that will reveal to you the sometimes hidden positive side of whatever is happening in your life. Open your conscious mind to God, so that God may let you see or realize the long-term positive picture of what is taking place.
The greatest faith to meet life’s tests can come from the knowledge that at the center of your mind is the Mind of God, which is ready, able, and—above all—willing to help you, for you are God’s creation.
Dr. Paul Leon Masters
Text taken from Dr. Paul Leon Masters’ “The Theocentric Way of Life,” Volume 5: Module 52.
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Intro and ending music © “Night Radiance” by Maxim Kornyshev