Tag Archives tests

Tests and Empathy: How Hardship Can Help Us Help Others

I believe that tests and hardships in this life refine our character, soften our hard edges and bring us closer to knowing God. Abdu’l-Baha tells us:

Tests are benefits from God, for which we should thank Him. Grief and sorrow do not come to us by chance, they are sent to us by the Divine Mercy for our own perfecting… Men who suffer not, attain no perfection. The plant most pruned by the gardener is that one which, when the summer comes, will have the most beautiful blossoms and most abundant fruit.

However, another purpose of tests is that they increase our empathy and in turn allow us to serve others. What if in fact the highest purpose of tests is that they help us understand and aid others through their hardships and be a cause of their happiness? Continue reading

What Does it Mean to Trust in God?

Trusting in God is important and potentially challenging for Baha’is. We might think this is particularly true because, every now and then, we face tests and difficulties and life gets rough.

But this raises a question: what does it mean to trust in God? To trust in someone, as I understand it, is to expect some action or inaction from them. When I trust that Jeff will tell me if a particular piece of clothing makes me look fat, I expect something from him – in this case, an honest opinion.

But what should we expect God to do when we trust in Him?

Some might think this question sounds odd. We’re not God, so how blasphemous is it to then think that we can expect God to do things as if we know what God would will?  Continue reading