Assurance of Hope...
Have you ever been afraid that there will be a time that you cannot emotionally bear what you are being asked to endure? Have you ever been at the place where you honestly thought your suffering (in the body, or emotionally) was too much and that you were unable to make it any longer without relief?
Suffering and trials can reveal a lack of assurance in one’s salvation.
Sometimes a lack of assurance is warranted because actions don’t indicate there is anything spiritual going on within a person. We don’t see inside the heart of a person so we do not judge the heart; but they have made a profession of faith so we expect to see some evidence of the Holy Spirit within them. Could it be that these trials are to draw them to God toward genuine saving faith?
I am very cautious these days about accepting a profession of faith. When I am as sure as I can be that a person is regenerated, then I can confidently declare to them that the testing they are in the midst of could be the strongest proof of assurance. A sign from God that you indeed do belong to Him! James 1 says that our trials will produce a perfect faith that never doubts. A faith that is so strong that no matter what happens it never touches your eternal hope.
When your response to trials is correct what will come out of them will be a mature, complete confidence in God’s eternal purposes in your life. This can be your greatest source of joy.
~From Biblical Counseling for Women