My dad always said, “The strongest steel is made in the hottest fire.”
Trials provide us opportunities for strength in Christ. Peter taught: “In this you greatly rejoice, though now for a little while you may have had to suffer grief in all kinds of trials. These have come so your faith — of greater worth than gold, which perishes even though refined by fire — may be proved genuine and may result in praise, glory and honor when Jesus Christ is revealed” (1 Peter 1:6-7).
Peter spoke to the early Christians because many of them were losing their physical inheritance when they chose to leave their old lives behind. They had refused to go to the guild meetings at pagan temples and were seen as unprofessional in business. They were criticized for not being family-oriented because they refused to go to the family events that were also held at pagan temples. They were even criticized for being unpatriotic because they would not bow down to Caesar, who called himself divine.
Though we face similar trials today, our faith in Christ will be proved genuine to all. Peter illustrates this with the imagery of a refiner of metal. Refinement brings heat to the metal. The hotter the fire, the more the metal’s impurities rise to the top. This is the case when trials of our faith come our way, and our impurities rise to the surface. In the refinement process, the biggest, baddest impurities ooze out near the end when the fire is at its hottest. In the heat of our trials, the Refiner removes our impurities. He continues the process until He sees His reflection in the metal.
Jesus, the Restorer, is refining us amidst our trials and temptations, ready to remove the impurities that rise to the surface so that we will be proved genuine and authentic. When He looks at you, who does He see?
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