There has been a fire here in Colorado Springs and it has been devastating for a lot of people. It destroyed hundreds of homes and there have been many losses for a lot of people. I don’t know anything about the area where the fire raged out of control for several days but I do know a few things…
…the first day that it was reported, I saw the billowing smoke while out with a friend and we remarked to one another about it and wondered where it was and what was burning.
…for a few days after we spotted the smoke I would go outside and smell the smoke and there was a smoky haze in the air.
…I knew we were safe.
…the fire raged.
…I saw it on the news and heard a lot of talk about it.
For over a week, now, I have been praying off and on that the fire be put out and for the people involved, and Wednesday we interceded with our school for all that it entails. I pondered on what exactly to pray about.
As I prayed, the word refiner came to my mind…refiner’s fire.
Gold, silver, beautiful artfully produced pieces of glass…
Two scriptures came to my mind as I was praying:
“Awake, O sword, against My Shepherd,
Against the Man who is My Companion,”
Says the Lord of hosts.
“Strike the Shepherd,
And the sheep will be scattered;
Then I will turn My hand against the little ones.
And it shall come to pass in all the land,”
Says the Lord,
“That two-thirds in it shall be cut off and die,
But one–third shall be left in it:
I will bring the one–third through the fire,
Will refine them as silver is refined,
And test them as gold is tested.
They will call on My name,
And I will answer them.
I will say, ‘This is My people’;
And each one will say, ‘The Lord is my God.”
“Behold, I send My messenger,
And he will prepare the way before Me.
And the Lord, whom you seek,
Will suddenly come to His temple,
Even the Messenger of the covenant,
In whom you delight.
Behold, He is coming,”
Says the Lord of hosts.
But who can endure the day of His coming?
And who can stand when He appears?
For He is like a refiner’s fire
And like launderers’ 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.”
I have never been the victim of a physical fire, but I have walked through many emotional and spiritual fires. These fires have refined me.
The last 3 months have been a refining fire for me.
Have I arrived? NO!!!!
I think of a close family member who is in the process of being refined. He is in prison right now. A few years ago he was on his way to work and a freak accident happened. He rear ended a trailer and his almost brand new truck caught on fire. Before he realized it, he was standing out on the freeway in rush hour traffic and his truck was completely in flames. The fire department arrived and put the flames out and in a few minutes a fireman brought this young man’s Bible to him and the Bible was still intact and barely even touched by the flames that had destroyed the truck. Coincidence? I don’t think so! That occurrence could have been a message of refinement to this young man!
Even now, as I type this, he is being refined.
For many of us, refinement is a process. We go through the fire and once the flames die down and the finished product starts to shine through, another form of refinement begins.
That is how my life has gone for many years now.
One day there will be a completely finished and perfected product.
Only God knows what the finished product is to be used for. I can only guess and even my guesses are but feeble attempts. He is the one who knows what it is all about and it is not all about me! It is about Him and it is about good that is Him. It is about Him and Him alone being glorified.
All I know is what He has shown me and He has shown me much…but He has not shown me all!
And I leave you with this final word…His promise is that He gives beauty for ashes…blow away the ashes after the embers cool down and the beauty shines forth…
Love and blessings to you!