So I have been thinking about the last post, especially about the deception of fear the enemy loves to use from his bag of tricks. I see this tool being used successfully in so many lives, including mine. And yet, when I see people step out inspite of the fears the enemy taunts them with, I see wonderful things done to the glory of God.
God speaks to us about fear in 1 John 4:18
There is no fear in love; but perfect love casts out fear, because fear involves torment. But he who fears has not been made perfect in love.
In my personal story, one I shared in an earlier post (see linked here) …I let fear drive my decisions. In fear I attempted to protect myself from a perceived harm. But in LOVE…God stepped in and cast out that fear. Don’t you know that in those 3 days when I was preparing to face my husband…I prayed to God for help. And even though I didn’t know exactly what kind of help to ask for…God knew what I needed and He not only cast out the fear but He replaced that fear with a new level of love between me and Him.
1 John 4:18 promises that perfect love casts out all fear. “but he who fears has not been made perfect in love”. As christians, we are constantly being sanctified; being refined to reflect the one who has that perfect love. We are made perfect in love as we go through the refiner’s fire. Each part of our journey can expose one more imperfection, one more fear or one more form of bondage of the enemy that God wants us to be freed from.
Knowing this gives me a different perspective when I face challenges, hardships or difficulties in life. I say, "Let the refining happen so that we can be made perfect in love…perfect in His image."
FOR FURTHER CONSIDERATION ON THIS TOPIC:
Malachi 3:3 says: "He will sit as a refiner and purifier of silver." This verse puzzled some women in a Bible study and they wondered what this statement was saying about the character and nature of God. One of the women offered to find out the process of refining silver and get back to the group at their next Bible Study. That week, the woman called a silversmith and made an appointment to watch him at work. She didn't mention anything about the reason for her interest beyond her curiosity about the process of refining silver. As she watched the silversmith, he held a piece of silver over the fire and let it heat up. He explained that in refining silver, one needed to hold the silver in the middle of the fire where the flames were hottest as to burn away all the impurities. The woman thought about God holding us in such a hot spot then she thought again about the verse that says: "He sits as a refiner and purifier of silver." She asked the silversmith if it was true that he had to sit there in front of the fire the whole time the silver was being refined. The man answered that yes, he not only had to sit there holding the silver, but he had to keep his eyes on the silver the entire time it was in the fire. If the silver was left a moment too long in the flames, it would be destroyed. The woman was silent for a moment. Then she asked the silversmith, "How do you know when the silver is fully refined?" He smiled at her and answered, "Oh, that's easy -- when I see my image in it." ~author unknown
If today you are feeling the heat of the fire, remember that God has His eye on you and will keep watching you until He sees His image in you.
Consider now how God may be working in your life to refine you into a reflection of His perfect love.
What do you think?