The teacher is always silent during a test
Teaching involves a lot of talking. A teachers morning starts at 07:00am and, although many may not believe this, ends at 16:00pm. Yes that's right, we do not work half day jobs! Amazing right! Out of those 9 hours we speak for about 7 hours of the day and sometimes with no free periods in between. If you ever wondered why your teacher friends don't like to hang out with you on weekends chances are they are all talked out. There comes a time though were we don't talk and that is always during a test or an exam. During this time the students have to answer questions and solve problems themselves. They are given the opportunity to prove themselves based on what they have learnt. God is like that with us as well, there are many times when we go through situations where we find it difficult to discern Gods will or presence. During this time despite many desperate prayers and sometimes bargaining we often find that we receive no guidance, help or comfort. What we do feel though is confusion, frustration and even pain. It feels as though our prayers have failed to reach God because God is silent.
If the last three weeks are to go by I would say that there were many times where I found my head on my pillow crying out asking God if He left me. I would shout out saying, "You promised You wouldn't leave, You said everyone else may leave but You would always stay, where are You?" And there I was waiting for an answer, opening the bible at random hoping to find a scripture relating to my situation but nothing. My heart just kept sinking, did God stop caring? What did I do to make Him dislike me? If you are like me, situations always make your emotions go on a downward spiral and it takes a lot of strength to minus the emotions from the situation and deal with the situation as it is and for what it is. This has been my rollercoaster for the last three weeks, it was one problem after another darting itself at me and the more I worshiped and prayed the harder it got. It came from all directions; it started of with someone attacking my character and work ethic, the safety of my job being questioned, my financial status going bad very quickly and the cherry on the cake, the accident that happened and then a week of back to back emails with the people who knocked me without any solutions. So here I was attacked in every aspect one could possibly think off and this was the time that God decided that He was going to be quiet. I got to a point where nothing made sense. Last week was one of the few times in my life where I was left speechless. I got to a point where I had 100s of questions and no answers, I literally felt like everything was crumbling in front of me. There was a constant thought that remained which was that I wasn't strong enough to deal with it all. I thought of all the people I know and I could pick out that at least half of them had the capability to deal with these issues and deal with it well, why was it given to me?
God seems so silent and so distant, it just doesn't seem right. Then this morning during our staff meeting the principal addressed us on the cycle tests that the students are writing this week and he reminded us of our preparation. While listening to him my mind drifted to the saying that the teacher is always silent during the test. I was reminded that God is still with me but I have to go through this test because of where He is taking me not because of where I am right now. See chances are all these situations came about to test my attitude, my faith and my ability to stand strong in knowing who my God is. My mind drifted to Jesus and His greatest test. God seemed silent and distant to Him too. When Jesus was in agony on the cross He cried out "My God, my God why have You forsaken me - Matthew 27:46. Jesus felt abandoned by His father. He felt alone. And yet, He still had to be obedient. It hit me that Jesus could have chosen to remove Himself from the situation but instead He chose to stay and complete His mission. I rushed to my office after the meeting and I googled Gods purpose for our lives and I stumbled across a passage that said Jesus was perfected through His suffering. The passage went on to say that Gods purpose for us is to become spiritually mature and perfected; to become like Jesus. Spiritual maturity comes through trials and tribulations. Finally, something that made sense. I remembered a passage that a friend sent to me last week and I read it again this morning and it said "if God comes running to you every time you have a difficulty, your spiritual muscles will never develop. You'll never really learn to trust Him. When you are calm despite whats coming against you, that is a sign of maturity. That is a sign that you have developed faith". So many things to comprehend and all before 08:30am; I mean I didn't even have coffee yet. What does this all mean though? Personally I see it like this; this is my big test. I have been tested a lot in the last 8 years and looking back now none of them has been as hard as this one is at the moment but with every test there has to be a result and in order for me to get that A+ then I have got to stand strong in my faith and what I know. I have to constantly remind myself of the truth rather than to be swept up by my feelings - I think if anything the battle of my feelings will be my biggest battle. Because Jesus passed His test, He is able to help us when we are tested and like wise this battle is probably there so that I can use this experience to help someone else in the future but to get to that point would mean having to fight my fight pushing past every hurdle no matter how hard or how alone I may feel in the process. If you are going through something right now that feels like God is not there then trust me when I say its time to fight your fight too. Stand strong and be faithful because He is faithful. We all go through seasons and like winter passed and spring surfaced so too will your season change. I think for me I am learning that breakthrough is inevitable, it has to come, but its my attitude through the storm that will be the determining factor of how long I will spend in this wilderness.
Until next time remember that we walk by faith not by sight, prayer changes things and that the teacher is always silent during the test.