I loved our flashcard tests in third grade when we were learning our multiplication tables, and my favorite test was the Friday spelling test, because I was much better at spelling than I was at some of my other subjects! I always fared well in the spelling bee at school. While some tests were fun, others helped shape our future course. We had a very important math test to pass when we were in 7th grade, it was a precursor to what level of math we would take when entering high school. During our junior year in high school, we were required to take Government. Passing a year-end Constitution test was a requirement to graduate the following year. Every high school student had to take speech class their freshman year in order to graduate as well.
We all remember our school days, including those days of test-taking that we dreaded, studied for, worried over, or even looked forward to. Those of us who have long ago completed our studies in school have come to learn that there are many tests in life, and that the wise never stop learning. This is just as true in our spiritual life, as Jesus reminds us in the Book of Mark:
Then He said to them, “Pay attention to what you hear. By your own standard of measurement [that is, to the extent that you study spiritual truth and apply godly wisdom] it will be measured to you [and you will be given even greater ability to respond]—and more will be given to you besides. For whoever has [a teachable heart], to him more [understanding] will be given; and whoever does not have [a yearning for truth], even what he has will be taken away from him. Mark 4:24-25
It’s been said that if one does not grasp the meaning of this parable in Mark, then it will be difficult to understand the others. Without a teachable heart, one willing to hear, receive, and study the Word of God, spiritual growth will be impossible. Perhaps you’re just starting a testing time, or maybe you are in the middle of a testing. Perhaps you are celebrating the passing of a test that came your way by divine appointment. Wherever you find yourself, heed the words of Jesus and take to heart all you learn in the Word of God along the way. It is in the building up of our faith, knowledge, and the wisdom to do what we know is right that we grow spiritually. We cannot become satisfied or complacent when it comes to knowing God and His Word. We must build upon what we know is true, or lose even that which we have learned. How are your tests going?