Refiner’s Fire

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Christians have a different perspective on suffering because we look for meaning in the process.  We feel God close to us in times of trials.  How else could Paul and Silas sing songs of praise to the Lord while chained up in a prison cell?  How else do you explain the servant of God who is arrested in a Muslim country yet begs his friends NOT to push for his release, just let God have His way?  How else do you account for the Chinese pastor who spends the rest of his life talking about the “golden days” of his captivity when Jesus was so sweet and close?  “Suffering produces perseverance; and perseverance, character; and character, hope.” so says Romans 5:3-4.

But I like how The Message version says it:

“We continue to shout our praise even when we’re hemmed in with troubles, because we know how troubles can develop passionate patience in us, and how that patience in turn forges the tempered steel of virtue, keeping us alert for whatever God will do next.  In alert expectancy such as this, we’re never left feeling shortchanged.  Quite the contrary- we can’t round up enough containers to hold everything God generously pours into our lives through the Holy Spirit!”  (Romans 5:3-5 The Message)

There’s an old song sung by Vineyard from back when I was a kid.  It talks about the Refining Fire of the Holy Spirit at work in the life of a Jesus Follower.  It requires fire to purify silver and gold… very hot fire.  And it is the same way with us.  In our troubles, we are made more useful and beautiful and pure for our work here on this Earth.  God always has a plan where suffering is concerned.  It is not random. I hum this tune to myself quite often as I meditate on the lyrics:

Purify my heart
Let me be as gold and precious silver
Purify my heart
Let me be as gold, pure gold
Purify my heart
Cleanse me from within
And make me holy
Purify my heart
Cleanse me from my sin
Deep within

Refiner’s fire

My heart’s one desire

Is to be holy

Set apart for You, Lord

I choose to be holy

Set apart for You, my Master

Ready to do Your will

About amamiot

My family and I are missionaries in Costa Rica. Before that we lived in Mexico and before that we came from Minnesota. I am a teacher, an artist, a "journaler", a quilter, a cooker, a baker, a hostess, a mom, a wife, a daughter, a sister, a friend. I like reading and watching movies (ehem, and quoting movie lines). I would love to be in a Jane Austin movie but I don't know how to ballroom dance or play Whist.

One response »

  1. Pingback: Don’t Quit « A Lady-In- Waiting

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