“You have tried my heart, you have visited me by night.” - Psalm 17:3
Tried my heart - Make no mistake here, God does not tempt people. People are tempted by their desires (James 2). God however does “test” His people. That is what “tried my heart” is saying here. Being tested with various trials is part of life and Christians are not exempt from this. The Lord tests the heart to find out what a person really treasures most. For the unbelieving person, this may seem like a unloving thing to do. Why would a loving God test His people to the point of suffering? There are a lot of ways to answer this question, but perhaps my favorite answer is this: God develops and strengthens faith out of the depths of suffering. He is a great miner! Nothing that we go through as a human being is ever wasted when we make it known to God. So the best way to use suffering to our advantage is to pray, to cry out to God, and to have faith that he is working in the midst of our difficulty.
I’ve mentioned this before, but we all need to be reminded of this point. We should aim to let prayer be our first reaction to everything. We should pray at all times and without ceasing, and we should meditate on God’s word and especially on His promises, writing them onto the tablets of our hearts. In doing so we will come out of our season of suffering hewn from a different stone. The Cornerstone that is Jesus Christ!