When I was young, I enjoyed learning and applying the scientific method in a variety of ways to the world around me. The basic premise is that you observe how things in the world work to build a hypothesis, test these assumptions/hypotheses, and then discard/expand/refine them accordingly, based on your results. You can do controlled experiments that test your assumptions to find out whether they hold water, or not. One of the key factors in experiments is controlling for all the variables (Heat, time, impurities, etc) that can affect an outcome. We can’t always account for every variable, which may explain why our results vary somewhat also. Science is a term used fairly loosely these days (for both good and bad science), but the principle can be applied in most any area of life.
Beloved, do not believe every spirit, but test the spirits to see whether they are from God, for many false prophets have gone out into the world. I John 4:1
The same way we test the world around us can be applied to our spiritual lives as well. When we apply the principle and practice of forgiveness in our lives, what is the result? Forgiveness dissipates anger, bitterness, and resentment. When we experience God’s forgiveness through Christ, we are born again and made new in multiple ways. Forgiveness provides a place for love to grow in our lives. It works, just as much as when we receive it from God and others, as when we forgive others.
Taste and see that the Lord is good; blessed is the one who takes refuge in him. Psalm 34:8
When we realize that we are supposed to pray, we put it to practice and learn from the results, or lack of results. As we mature, we learn not just to pray for what I want, but grow to listen more than ask to understand what God wants. Our prayers eventually become less self-serving and more selfless as we serve. Our heart desires what God wants more than what we want. We test and see how God works and allow him to prove himself true in our lives. We should learn as much from our mistakes as we do from getting what we expect.
These have come so that the proven genuineness of your faith—of greater worth than gold, which perishes even though refined by fire—may result in praise, glory and honor when Jesus Christ is revealed. 1 Peter 1:7
Take a moment and write down examples through your life of how your faith has been tested and found true. Where are areas you are still struggling to understand or to live out as God is calling you to do? None of us are perfect in this lifetime, but when we allow God to refine us, we become just a little more like Him each time he works in our lives. It is not often easy, or enjoyable, or evident as to how he is working, but when we are tested and found true, we realize that He has been working on us. Encourage one another through the process of being found tested and true in your faith!
Strength and Courage in Christ,