Thursday, July 14, 2011

Refiner's Fire

The refining process in our lives never ends. God is always at work in all situations to bring our character into conformity with Jesus and to conform our will to his will.

Malachi 3:2-3 says in part, “for he is like a refiner’s fire and like fullers’ soap. He will sit as a refiner and purifier of silver, and he will purify the sons of Levi and refine them like gold and silver.”

Proverbs 3:11-12 read, “my son, do not despise the Lord’s discipline or be weary of his reproof, for the Lord reproves him whom he loves, as a father the son in whom he delights.”

Hebrews 12:5-11 read, “And have you forgotten the exhortation that addresses you as sons? “My son, do not regard lightly the discipline of the Lord, nor be weary when reproved by him. For the Lord disciplines the one he loves, and chastises every son whom he receives.” 7 It is for discipline that you have to endure. God is treating you as sons. For what son is there whom his father does not discipline? 8 If you are left without discipline, in which all have participated, then you are illegitimate children and not sons. 9 Besides this, we have had earthly fathers who disciplined us and we respected them. Shall we not much more be subject to the Father of spirits land live? 10 For they disciplined us for a short time as it seemed best to them, but he disciplines us for our good, that we may share his holiness. 11 For the moment all discipline seems painful rather than pleasant, but later it yields the peaceful fruit of righteousness to those who have been trained by it.”

By God’s grace, I recognized this in my life this week. I thought I was doing the right thing in a particular situation and found out very quickly that I had made a mistake--out of ignorance or over-zealousness or control issues or...well, you get the point. I had to confess and repent. It is painful, and the consequences I will bear, by God’s grace...But, that’s just it. It is God’s grace that refines me for his glory and his purposes.

Have you recognized the refiner’s fire in your life recently?

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