“God left him, to try him” (2 Chronicles 32:31).

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?

“God did tempt Abraham, and said unto him…. Take now thy son…and offer him there for a burnt offering” (Genesis 22:1–2). God proved an entire nation to find out what was really in its heart. “The Lord thy God led thee these forty years in the wilderness, to humble thee, and to prove thee, to know what was in thine heart, whether thou wouldest keep his commandments, or no” (Deuteronomy 8:2).

We see an amazing thing in 2 Chronicles 32:31: God left a great king for a season to prove him. “God left him, to try him, that he might know all that was in his heart.”

Often, while in the righteous pursuit of God’s work, the steward of the Lord finds himself apparently forsaken—tried to the limits of endurance and left all alone to battle the forces of hell. Every man God has ever blessed has been proved in the same manner.

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 desired, but should you fail, remember: It is what remains in your heart that God is 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 withdraws his presence to prove us. Even Christ experienced that lonely moment on the cross. It is in these times that our blessed Savior is most touched by the feeling of our infirmity—and he whispers, “I pray for thee, that thy faith fail not.”

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 weakness. Take it up, move on in faith, and his strength will be made perfect in you. Is your cross of self and sin too heavy? Then, my friend, take up your cross and follow on. He understands and is there beside you to lift the heavy burden!