What Do You See Outside YOUR Open Window Today?

What Do You See Outside YOUR Open Window Today?
Remember: "When God closes a door, He always opens a window!" You never know what might be out there waiting for you!

Wednesday, March 3, 2010

The Refining Fire-Preparation for that "Open Window" ?

Proverbs 17:3: "The refining pot is for silver and  the furnace for gold, but the Lord tests the heart."
Malachi 3:2b-3: "For He is like a refiner's fire and like fullers' soap. He will sit as a refiner and a purifier of silver; He will purify the sons of Levi, and purge them as gold and silver, that they may offer to the Lord an offering in righteousness."

Have you ever seen a rough nugget of gold fresh out of the rocks and dirt? When I first saw a real gold nugget at one of those places where you "pan for gold" along the road (a tourist trap) I thought, "How can anything so beautiful come out of something so ugly and lumpy and dirty?" One would wonder why people would literally kill to have such precious metals! But then you go to the jewelry store and you see all the gorgeous rings, pins, necklaces, brooches and other priceless items that have been fashioned out of those ugly lumps, and you marvel at the difference! What could have happened to make such a change?

In the case of gold, it must be crushed, ground, soaked in a chemical solution and melted at a temperature of at least 1063 degrees C and poured into a mold. Silver also goes through this refining process and melts at 960 degree C. When the metals are soaked in a chemical solution, they are sifted through and all of the dross is poured off and discarded. In other words, it is purified, refined, strengthened, and formed into a thing of great beauty.

All of this process takes time, careful guidance, and skill. It also takes some terrifically high heat. Without following all these steps completely, gold and silver just wouldn't be the beautiful and precious metal that we know it to be. It would be like any other rock...nothing about which to become very excited!

We are much like gold and silver in its natural state...lumps of clay without any real beauty and use. Oh certainly, we would make a great paperweight or door stop, but without careful cultivation we would not become the beautiful person that God intends us to be. Sometimes the refining process takes a lot of high heat, grinding, melting, crushing and sifting out the ugly things of our lives so that we may become useful, strong, and beautifully fashioned for God's use. This process is never pleasant, certainly not very desirable, but oh so necessary. God's Word says that the Lord tests the hearts. This refining process is purifying the innermost being of our hearts and souls, purging out the dark and ugly things, cleaning the dirty corners and grinding away the rough edges. It's very painful going through this process, but the end results certainly justify the means. God's refining fire does not consume us, but it purges us of all unrighteousness that when He returns we "may offer to the Lord an offering in righteousness." (Malachi 3:3b.)

Lord, I do not like the fiery trials through which You have allowed me to travel, but I thank you for them. Even though the heat was sometimes more than I could bear, You, oh Lord, did not consume me. You have tested my heart, and have strengthened me in my innermost fibers. You have created in me a clean heart, so that I may shine as pure gold and silver. I know that I am not alone in these fiery trials, for Christ Himself had to suffer for my sake and for the sins of the whole world. Therefore I rejoice in that I am a partaker of Christ's sufferings, and when His glory is revealed, I may also be glad with exceeding joy. (I Peter 4:12-13) Lord, just help me to remember when the trials come that the final result will be precious in Your sight. Thank you for caring about me enough to take the time to purify and refine me as gold and silver. Amen.

Are you going through some fiery trial right now, and you just can't see how anything good could possibly come from it?  Or maybe you have already been there, and you are still reeling from its heat.  Perhaps another door has slammed shut in your life, and you feel abandoned and angry.  Please HOLD ON, dear friend! You are NOT ALONE in your furnace!  Like Daniel's friends, when King Nebuchadnezzar had them thrown into the fiery furnace (see Daniel 3:8-25), the Son of God, Jesus our Redeemer, is right there in the midst of the flames with you! He will NEVER leave you or forsake you! (Hebrews 13:5) Be ready and watching...that "open window" from God may be right around the corner.  Hey! That 'pot of gold' we've all been looking for isn't at the end of the rainbow afterall! It's right here, inside each and every one of us...if we'll just let God finish the work He has started!  I guess that makes us very precious indeed!!!


  1. This is beautiful and I pray anyone who needs a lift or a simple word of encouragement has read your post today.

  2. Thank you Rhonda...you gave me that lift by your words of encouragement! I needed that this morning! Love, Pam


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