Refined by Fire: Purposes for Your Pain

 


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When we get hard pressed and we’ve got certain doom coming at us from one direction and a stone wall coming from the other, it makes us scream out in desperation and despair, “WHY GOD?!” The most important thing that we can do in our trials is have the right perspective. Without the right perspective we won’t see our trials as opportunities to grow and develop but just bad luck.

Many years ago, a large American shoe manufacturer sent two sales reps out to different parts of the Australian outback to see if they could drum up some business among the aborigines. Some time later, the company received telegrams from both agents. The first one said, “No business here. Natives don’t wear shoes. ” The second one said, “Great opportunity here-natives don’t wear shoes!”

Let’s look into the famous biblical test that Job endured to pull out some answers to God’s reasoning for allowing the enemy to afflict us and life to throw wild cards at us.

We’ve looked first at why God put His protective hedge around Job and blessed him so greatly in the last three messages. Now let’s switch gears and take a look at why God made an offer to Satan to test Job.

Model Godliness for Others-

As Christians we always want to be used to do great things for God and be ambassadors for Christ when there’s power, fame, or honor to be gained in doing it. But one of the most important witnessing opportunities that you will ever have as a Christian is to handle your trials and adversity with grace, with praises to God, and with peace. It absolutely confounds the devil when he throws his best shot at you and yet you stand firm in your faith and display your love for God.

You may cry and plead with God at home, but when people see you depending on Your Father to deliver you from your adversity at times that they turn to alcohol, people, anger, or depression, you better believe that you have just evidenced Jesus in the midst of your adversity. They say that you’re the only bible some people will read and we know that we are called to be the light of the world and the salt of the earth.

Bring Glory to God-

God was very pleased with Job as He is with any one of us who freely loves Him just because He’s our Father. When the music fades and all the trappings of God’s blessings have burned up in your fiery trials, the only thing that will stand in the presence of God is a heart of love and devotion to Him. Job chose to serve the Lord even without any benefits; what an awesome testimony. “Naked I came from my mother’s womb, and naked shall I return there. The Lord gave, and the Lord has taken away; blessed be the name of the Lord. ” Job 1:21

This may seem like a really simple minded man to just sum up his losses that way but when you’ve been so devastated to have lost absolutely everything and everyone who meant something to you in life, where do you turn? People end up hanging themselves at this point; people end up in straight jackets at this point! He still managed to muster up enough within him so as to bless the name of the Lord. That’s worship and glory to God.

Deepen Job’s Walk with God-

Adversity destroys superficial faith. God calls us to walk closely to Him; He wants us to truly love Him and not just what He can provide. Only with fire will all of that which is false be revealed. When God gets ready to bring us to a deeper place in some area of our life, He allows fire to come into our lives to burn away and consume the fluff that is in our heart and devotion. It is in the midst of your trials you have to decide to continue on with God on a deeper level of understanding and devotion or draw back from Him into sin. Job lost everything and he was going to either curse God and die or endure until the Lord either killed him or brought him out. Job recommitted his life to God even though God was allowing him to be persecuted, afflicted in every way, and be wrongfully accused by his friends. The more we check our motives for serving God, the less God’s fire hurts us.

Sharing in Christ’s suffering-

We are called to the glorious call of being kings and priests for God and manifest His promises. This is possible because of the sin debt that Jesus paid for us but don’t ever think that it’s absolutely free. Salvation is a free gift but walking in the promises of the kingdom requires our ambitions, our comforts, our passions, and our resources in exchange. We have to come to the place where we seek to not only take part in Christ’s inheritance and blessings but we are willing to take part in His sufferings. Life only comes through the process of dying, like a caterpillar dies to give way to a beautiful butterfly.

The same is true for us. You know the saying, “No pain, no gain!” God’s got wondrous plans and promises in store for us. While you’re going through trials, please remember to seek God’s perspective and try to remember some of these specific reasons that God allows suffering to come upon us. Let’s keep on trusting God and pressing further into the peace that passes all understanding and that joy that’s unspeakable. It’s all in Him.

Anthony Obey is the publisher and co-compiler of the women’s inspirational book series entitled Refined by Fire with his wife, Crystal Obey. There are currently 3 books within the women’s series which includes inspirational testimonies and messages from 61 leading women around the nation. This message is inspired by the Refined by Fire Book series. Find out how you can become a writing contributor, sign up for our mailing list, and order books at http://www.RefinedbyFireWomen.com

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