Tuesday, May 02, 2006


The Refiner's Fire

Have you ever been through the Fire?
I've been preaching through the Book of The Revelation lately, as most of you know. Yesterday I preached from Revelation 3:14-22, The Message to the Church at Laodicea, The Lukewarm Church. Even though it was a "hard" sermon, it seemed to have been well received. To only be the glory for that, for it is His Word. As always I pray that our great and glorious God and Savior was lifted up and glorified in that sermon, as with all sermons. After all, it is about Him and not about us. But then, it is about us, in a manner. That is, it is about our lifestyles as "Christians." God's family is to demonstrated the character and glory of God. If we both corporately and individually don't do that, then God will chasten those whom He loves, those who belong to Him.

Many of us may not think that we look like Laodicean Christians. I know that most of the time, I do and from what I have observed concerning the church, not just ours, so do most Christians. We become self-satisfied and complacent; we become......lukewarm. But, I'm not trying to preach that sermon again, although, I know I need to hear it.

Gold Refined by Fire
The Refiner, in this case our YAHWEH God, would have us to be of the purest quality. Gold can only come to be that way by the process of refinement. The impurities must be removed. The only way that the impurities can be remove it to be placed upon the fire. The impurities rise to the surface where they can be removed. Why this process? The impurities and mixed in with the gold itself. They are not a part of the gold, but the are so intermingled with it that something extreme must be done in order to separate the impurities from the gold itself. Also those impurities and hidden. That is, most of them cannot be seen with the untrained eye. The gold may look fine; it may even look good enough. But the assayer knows the difference.

Our Heavenly Assayer
God knows the difference. He knows the impurities in our lives and He doesn't want them to be there. So, He puts us through the same process of refinement. He places a fine beneath us and turns up the heat in order that the impurities, that is those things that are not like Him, are separated from our very being, rise to the service and can be removed from our lives.

Gold doesn't care when the heat is turned up under it. It doesn't feel a thing. But we do. Most of the time it is a painful process. It brings discomfort into our lives. It even brings changes in our lives. Most people that I know do not like change. Change brings us out of our comfort zone.

One other thing the refining process does
The refining process causes us to look beyond ourselves. It causes us to look for help. We don't have to go through the process alone. The first one we can and should look to is the refiner. He knows just how much heat to apply. He isn't going to do anything that will hurt you spiritually. He know how many impurities exist in our lives. He is in control of the whole situation. Oh God, help me to remember that! Help me to trust You as you refine my life.

He also gives us families. I thank God for my family, especially my wife. She has been there for me through thick and thin. In many ways she is stronger than I am. Thank you Lord for my wonderful wife Anita.

God also gives us one another. I thank God for my brothers and sisters in Christ. I love you. I especially thank one of you who listened yesterday, who beared my burden with me. Thank you for your love and support and advise. Thank you for helping me remember not to worry.

God is Refining My Life
Yes, I and my family are going through the heat right now. Pray for us please. God is at work in our lives and that is a good thing. As we read from the Word yesterday we are to "buy from God gold refined in the fire." There is a cost involved. Nothing is free, save for our precious salvation, and that really wasn't free. It cost the Son of God much in order that we might be in right relationship with God.

Pray for us and we'll pray for you. Have a great day everyone!

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