Encouraging Words for When You Face a Test

Encouraging Words for When You Face a Test - Grace Fox

No one I know relishes taking a test but they reveal where we need to learn and grow. Remember God allows tests in our lives, but He always sits with us.

Tests make me nervous. In fact, I remember lying in fourth grade to skip writing a math test. I’d been sick with the flu for several days prior, and on the day of my return to school, the teacher plunked a math test on my desk. I took one look at it, felt the fear of failure sweep over me, and knew escape was my only option if I hoped to survive elementary school.

“I think I’m going to throw up,” I told the teacher. No joke.

“You’d better run to the bathroom, then,” she said. I dashed down the hall, locked myself in a bathroom stall, and then wondered what to do next.

A minute or two later, I heard the door open and my teacher’s voice say, “Grace, are you okay? I’ve asked the principal to take you home because you’re probably not over the flu yet.”

Sure enough, the principal drove me home and handed me over to my mother. Somehow, I managed to fool her, too. I must have been one very desperate child to go to that extent to avoid taking a test.

It’s test time…

Academic tests can be stressful, but they’re necessary to see how well we’re learning the lessons we need to know. Sometimes our heavenly Father presents us with tests of a different sort but for the same purpose.

Take the Israelites, for example. Exodus 16:4 says,

“Then the Lord said to Moses, ‘Look, I’m going to rain down food from heaven for you. Each day the people can go out and pick up as much food as they need for that day. I will test them in this to see whether or not they will follow my instructions.’”

Every morning, the flaky substance called manna appeared on the ground. And every morning, the people gathered as much as their households needed for that day. Those who gathered alot had nothing left over. And those who gathered a little had enough. Each family had just what it needed. (Exodus 16:17-18)

God wanted the Israelites to trust His care and ability to provide for their needs. It looked as though they understood and were headed for a passing grade. But then came the test. “Do not keep any of it until morning,” said Moses.

Pass or Fail

Some students passed. Others failed because they picked up more than they needed and stashed it overnight. When they woke up and went to retrieve their breakfast, they discovered a big, fat “F” on their test paper. The stored-up manna was full of maggots and had a terrible smell.

The test results revealed that, in the deepest part of their hearts, the people didn’t fully trust God to provide. Thankfully the failing grade influenced them to change their ways:

“After this the people gathered the food morning by morning, each family according to its need” (Exodus 16:21).

They’d seen God provide faithfully in the past, and they knew they could trust Him for the future.

Financial tests

As a missionary living on faith support, God tests me regularly in this regard. Do I trust Him to meet our financial needs? Just when I feel as though I’ve mastered this lesson, a major financial need arises: the car breaks down, our boat-home needs repairs, or a molar breaks.

My human nature wants to rush out to find a “real job.” But then I remember that God promises to provide for our needs. I can choose to rely on my own efforts, or I can do things God’s way and trust Him to keep His word. My response determines my grade. Will I pass or will I fail and have to relearn the lesson?

Tests come in all shapes and sizes

God asks us to trust Him with our kids’ well-being. He asks us to trust Him with a recent medical diagnosis. He asks us to trust Him for wisdom in knowing how to respond to a difficult relationship.

Those spiritual-type tests might make us nervous, and we might try to work around them or run away from them, but life experience tells us that going to such extremes never works well. Instead, we can be honest with Jesus about how we feel, and we can hang onto His promises.

Here are some encouraging words for when you face a test:

  • “Surely God is my salvation; I will trust and not be afraid. The Lord, the Lord himself, is my strength and my defense; he has become my salvation.” (Isaiah 12:2 NIV)
  • “God is our refuge and strength, an ever-present help in trouble.” (Psalm 46:1 NIV)
  • “When you pass through the waters, I will be with you; and when you pass through the rivers, they will not sweep over you. When you walk through the fire, you will not be burned; the flames will not set you ablaze.” (Isaiah 43:2 NIV)

No one I know relishes taking a test—least of all me—but they reveal areas in our lives where we need to learn and grow. Let’s remember that God allows tests in our lives, but He always sits with us so long as we’re in that place.

Has God tested you recently?

If so, how? What encouraging words did He send your way?

If you’re taking a test right now, then you might find this song by Kristene DiMarco a blessing.

Know you are loved,


Moving From Fear to Freedom - Grace Fox

Order your copy of Moving from Fear to Freedom: A Woman’s Guide to Peace in Every Situation and discover practical steps for facing and overcoming some of the top fears women face today.

Available wherever Christian books are sold or order your autographed copy here.

Moving From Fear to Freedom - Grace Fox

Order your copy of Moving from Fear to Freedom: A Woman’s Guide to Peace in Every Situation and discover practical steps for facing and overcoming some of the top fears women face today.

Available wherever Christian books are sold or order your autographed copy here.

Looking for hope? Want to move from fear to freedom? Desiring to expand your relationship with God? See my store for books and other products.

Available wherever Christian books are sold or purchase autographed copies on my website.

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  1. The struggle is real, but the struggle is not mine. What a freeing relief that is. And it is only because of Jesus. Lysa TerKeurst has this quote from her book Embraced, “In order to have p-e-a-c-e, I must r-e-l-e-a-s-e.” That completely changed my perspective on how I view struggle in my own life. It changed the entire lens and approach to struggle. Yes, the struggle is real, so very real. But the struggle is not mine.

    In the present picture, the battle belongs to the Lord. Exodus 14:14 says,”The LORD will fight for you; you need only to be still.”

    As I daily surrender the struggle of illness and suffering, here is the bigger picture. Because of Jesus, I have the V-I-C-T-O-R-Y now! I can not possess victory in my own strength. It is only possible through Christ’s death, burial, and resurrection. You see, I am not tethered to struggle. I am tethered to Jesus. HE is my anchor. I experience this daily, peace that is not the absence of struggle, suffering, trials, circumstance, or uncertainty. P-E-A-C-E is being in the P-R-E-S-E-N-C-E of J-E-S-U-S!

    How do I do that? Certainly not in my own strength. Three words. Praise and Worship. The Word of God tells us in Jeremiah 33:11 to “Bring a sacrifice of praise to the Lord.”

    Psalms 100 tells us to “Make a joyful noise unto the Lord. Come before his presence with singing. It is HE that hath made us, and not we ourselves.”

    I am a temple. I am HIS temple. 1 Corinthians 3:16-17 says, “Don’t you know that you yourselves are God’s temple and that God’s Spirit lives in you? 17 If anyone destroys God’s temple, God will destroy him; for God’s temple is sacred, and you are that temple.

    Scripture tells us that “The Lord inhabits the praises of his people.” So whether I feel like it, or not. Whether I have the strength to lift my hands, or not. I offer up praise and thanksgiving to my Savior.

    Jesus meets me there every single time. Sometimes, it’s shouts of joy. Sometimes, I’m hugging the base of the toilet with tears of exhaustion. Jesus meets me where I am. And when I am in his presence, there truly isn’t anything of this world that I have encountered that is sweeter, or more precious.

    The struggle is temporary. It will pass. Jesus is the one constant that never changes. Through struggle, I came to the realization that Jesus is not only my greatest need, But Jesus is my greatest want!

    1. So beautifully said, Christy. “Jesus meets me where I am” — that’s so true, and it’s life-changing. He knows the deepest needs of our heart, and He meets every one of them with His presence.

      Know you are loved,

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