Why Does God Take Us Through the Fire?

Fra Burmeister og Wain's Iron Foundry

“The fact that we are called upon to endure trial shows that the Lord Jesus sees in us something precious which He desires to develop. If He saw in us nothing whereby He might glorify His name, He would not spend time in refining us. He does not cast worthless stones into His furnace.” The Ministry of Healing p 471.2

Humanity’s response to hard times and trials is often, “God, why me?  Why are you allowing this to happen to me?  I don’t think I should have to endure this.”  We ask God why we have to walk a certain path and endure different flavors of unpleasant situations.

“God, I’m a good person.  I deserve better.”

God does not disagree.  However, God has a higher purpose for us than our immediate comfort.  God is trying to develop his own image within us, and one of His chosen methods for doing that is to place us in difficult circumstances to cleanse us from our faults and defects of character. His path to taking us to the better often lies through a crucible.

God operates with a truth that we don’t always like: trials reveal what is in our character.  God uses difficulties to reveal defects in our character.  His strategy is that once we are aware of our defects, we will come to Him for strength to overcome them.

1 Peter 4:12,13 – Beloved, do not think it strange concerning the fiery trial which is to try you, as though some strange thing happened to you; 13 but rejoice to the extent that you partake of Christ’s sufferings, that when His glory is revealed, you may also be glad with exceeding joy.

His goal is to have His glory, another way to describe His character, revealed in us.  I often think to myself that I hope I learn the lessons that God wants to teach quickly so that I don’t have to do more rounds through the fire than I need to.

It is important to keep in mind that God is in charge of a refining process in our lives, and that He has not lost control of that process.  He is taking us through the refining process because His opinion of us is that we are valuable.  As the heavenly surgeon holding a scalpel over our lives, He loves us enough that he is willing to hurt us in order to help us.

Hosea 6:1 – Come, and let us return to the Lord; for He has torn, but He will heal us; He has stricken, but He will bind us up.

In the crucibles of life, let us look for the lessons that God has for us rather than bemoaning the present circumstances.

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