One thing I am glad about in 2017 is my effort to stay at working out. It’s been the longest stretch ever for me to get into shape, work with a trainer, and find a way to stay physically active. It’s a work in progress. Read more
Over the past several weeks we have been in prayer for a missionary friends who has battled for his life. There are so many spiritual elements in the equation and the prayers of the saints have truly carried on a spiritual war. So much is at stake. It’s the life of a missionary. It’s a closed country. It’s the lives of believers in closed areas. It’s the call to reach the unreached.
We don’t like tests. We don’t like fire. But tests are what we get in life. We almost seem to demand easy roads, but never… never… is an easy road promised in Scripture. Leave that to some preacher somewhere… but make no mistake… testing is promised.
If we don’t want tests we simply do not want true faith. We don’t want the Kingdom. We don’t want a fire testing the basis of our belief and it may be because the basis of that belief is so faulty it will go up in smoke at the first spark.
The faith of Christ is real and it stands the fire. The faith we have in Christ is precious and no test will ever take it out.
God help us walk in true faith.
6 In this you rejoice, even if now for a little while you have had to suffer various trials, 7 so that the genuineness of your faith—being more precious than gold that, though perishable, is tested by fire—may be found to result in praise and glory and honor when Jesus Christ is revealed. 8 Although you have not seen him, you love him; and even though you do not see him now, you believe in him and rejoice with an indescribable and glorious joy, 9 for you are receiving the outcome of your faith, the salvation of your souls. (1 Pet. 1:6-9)
Jesus was led by the Spirit into the wilderness to be tempted by the devil. (Matt. 4:1)
Not every trial, not every test, can be blamed on the devil. The Lord can put us in tough situations to bring testing, to put fire to our faith… to forge the steel of faith in our lives.
It is never comfortable, but when the Lord brings the fire, it is always necessary.
The fire of testing can be used, like with the wilderness experience, to prepare for what is next.
We need to learn from the tests in our lives rather than try and move them off quickly and claim victory over the devil.
3 A crucible is for silver and a furnace for gold,
but the Lord tests the heart. (Prov. 17:3, CEB)
8 “But if I go to the east, he is not there;
if I go to the west, I do not find him.
9 When he is at work in the north, I do not see him;
when he turns to the south, I catch no glimpse of him.
10 But he knows the way that I take;
when he has tested me, I will come forth as gold.. (Job 23:8-10, NIV)
There is nothing “fun” about fire. There is nothing “fun” about testing. It’s probably why we don’t talk about too much, or if we do, we dwell on it lightly then move to the “FUN” part.
But testing produces what lies underneath. What lies underneath is gold. God knows it, but we’re too afraid of fire to let him bring out the gold.
No one “likes” fire… but the end result is amazing.