“Hezekiah prospered in all his works. However, regarding the ambassadors of the princes of Babylon, whom they sent to him to inquire about the wonder that was done in the land, God withdrew from him, in order to test him, that he might know all that was in his heart” (2 Chronicles 32:30-31, NKJV).

Often, while in the righteous pursuit of God’s work, the steward of the Lord finds himself apparently forsaken, seemingly left all alone to battle the forces of hell. Every man God has ever blessed has been proved in the same manner. Consider Abraham’s situation. “Now it came to pass after these things that God tested Abraham, and said to him… ‘Take now your son, your only son Isaac, whom you love…and offer him there as a burnt offering’” (Genesis 22:1–2). We know the end of the story, that a ram would be provided as Isaac’s substitute, but the patriarch did not know this on his journey up the mountain.

Do you find yourself in strange circumstances? Do you feel forsaken and alone? Do you fight a losing battle with an unpredictable enemy? These are signs pointing to the proving process.

Victory is always the desired result; but should you fail, remember that it is what remains in your heart that God is most interested in, your attitude after you have won or lost the lonely battle. Your devotion to him in spite of failure is his desire. Jesus has promised never to leave us or forsake us, but the record of scripture reveals there are seasons when the Father hides his presence to prove us. Even Christ experienced that lonely moment on the cross.

We have become so preoccupied in proving God that we have not prepared our hearts for the great tests of life whereby God proves man. Could it be that the great trial you are now facing, the burden you now carry, is actually God at work proving you?

Jesus says we are to take up our cross and follow him (see Matthew 16:24). What is that cross? It is the flesh with its frailness and sinfulness. Take it up, move on in faith, and his strength will be made perfect in you.