Would You Pass the Test?
We all know what tests are for. They are designed to see if we really know what we should know. Being a parent and a youth worker I hear about tests all the time; “that test was way too hard”, “I am going to fail this test”, or “I really should have studied.” Tests in school are normal, we know they are coming, and yet sometimes we still don’t pass.
What about tests in life? These are a lot less expected, yet definitely just as normal. They aren’t essay questions or multiple choice, but instead real life situations that will show if we really mean what we say–if we really stand for what we claim we do. About a week ago I found myself right in the middle of one of life’s tests.
If you are even a semi-regular reader of this blog then you know that I take my role as a husband and a dad seriously. Yes I am a pastor, and yes I make a lot of sacrifices for the church, but my family is not a sacrifice I am willing to make. We have all read several books and heard numerous speakers talk about how we need to put or families before the church, and it all sounds great in theory. But when that theory gets tested will we pass?
My wife’s grandmother went to be with the Lord last weekend, and our whole family is traveling to Seattle this weekend for her funeral. When we were faced with the decision of buying a plane ticket and arranging for my wife to travel to say goodbye and be by her side during her last hours, it hit me in the face. We both knew what was about to happen and we both realized how it was going to effect our family for the next few weeks. While discussing plans and options Maureen says “how can we do all this, there is so much going on at church.” Test given.
My wife knows my priorities, but this moment was when those words were being put to the fire. I responded “They will have to get through it all without us.” It has turned out that I did church family camp without my entire family, and my commitments at church this weekend are being handled without me.
I don’t share this with you seeking a badge of honor or a comment of “great job”. I issue this as a challenge to you; are you passing life’s tests? Do your words and commitments get backed up by your actions? Are you actually doing what you say you will do? Are you actually doing what the Bible says to do? Life’s tests are not usually expected, but they are many. Are you getting a passing grade?