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Why is there a test?

A Walk Through Proverbs

“The crucible is for silver, and the furnace is for gold,  and the Lord tests hearts.”  Proverbs 17:3 ESV
Remember those tests in school? Just the word might produce an anxiety about what was to come. At least for me, the anxiety was inversely proportional to just how prepared I was. 
I don’t know how much you may have thought about the reasons for the tests, but they did serve their purpose. They were to demonstrate your knowledge of the material to the teacher and likely to confirm what you already knew. At the conclusion of the test, both you and the teacher would clearly know how much you understood and you would be ready to progress to the next level whatever that might be. The purpose might be boiled down to two words, confirmation and progression. 
You may be tempted to wonder why then,  if the purpose of the tests in school would be to demonstrate our knowledge to the teacher, why would the Lord then test us. Why is there a test? He already knows what we know. The same two words might apply confirmation and progression. 
The same words as our school test, but the application is different. We aren’t confirming our understanding to the Lord. He is confirming it to us. It has been said that a faith that can’t be tested can’t be trusted. The testing of our faith confirms our faith.
The second application is progression. We progress to the next level with each test, in biblical terms we call it sanctification. We are progressing, or being changed, day by day as we are conformed to the image of Christ. He is purifying us as a refiner refines silver and gold until He can see His image in us. 
Our testing isn’t designed to reveal failure, but rather to reveal that Christ lives in us. 
This week pray that the Lord would strengthen you in times of testing and help you to see the Heavenly perspective. 
In His Hands,