Trials Part 1

As further understanding on trials are gained, I start to find something very interesting, it’s called peace. :) After discussing with other Christians and analyzing my own trials in life, there seems to be a common theme of “Why God?” I’m going to share a few of my thoughts on this.. First, on the trials and then next on the attacks of Satan –

Armor FaithSometimes we like to place the Lord in a box and make cemented statements like – “This is how He does it” or “It must be that way”. But really, this is just basing things on our own understanding. The word of God says to trust in Him and lean not on our own understanding.

For instance, there are examples in the bible where Satan requested to sift Peter, and Jesus said He would be praying for Peter so that he may later strengthen the brethren. The book of Job, God says something to Satan like “Have you considered my servant Job?”  Then, on the flip side, we have examples of judgment, consequence for our sin, etc. For this posting, I’ll just talk about the trials.

Luke 22:31-32 And the Lord said, Simon, Simon, behold, Satan hath desired to have you, that he may sift you as wheat: But I have prayed for thee, that thy faith fail not: and when thou art converted, strengthen thy brethren.

Job 1:8 And the LORD said unto Satan, Hast thou considered my servant Job, that there is none like him in the earth, a perfect and an upright man, one that feareth God, and escheweth evil?

For me to point a finger at something and label it as “bad” could be contrary to the truth.  Here’s an example – If someone would have seen me years ago, they would have witnessed a drug user. The physical appearance of the situation and my choices were not very wise. But, as I was doing drugs, the Holy Spirit was a consuming fire, burning my conscience.. conviction. This was good. I was being refined and the impurities were being burned off. See, in our own understanding, we can judge things as bad just with the glance of the eyes. In the eyes of God, the results of choosing worldly things over Him were surely a bad choice, but there was a glorious glorious transformation taking place in the unseen world. In the spiritual realm, He was at work. The drug use gradually declined and then stopped, GLORY TO GOD! So really, how bad was the situation that the eyes seen? There may very well be others who have (or will) quit drugs because of this testimony. The action/choice, yes, it was bad.. The Hand of God upon the situation, Good. God is always in control, amen. He will use Satan in a way that will ultimately bring glory back to God. Is He good or is He good?

2 Corinthians 4:15-18 For all things are for your sakes, that the abundant grace might through the thanksgiving of many redound to the glory of God. For which cause we faint not; but though our outward man perish, yet the inward man is renewed day by day. For our light affliction, which is but for a moment, worketh for us a far more exceeding and eternal weight of glory; While we look not at the things which are seen, but at the things which are not seen: for the things which are seen are temporal; but the things which are not seen are eternal.

What I’m getting at is that some times, these trials are a consuming fire, molding us more into the image of Jesus Christ. Without going through the fire, we cannot get refined as precious silver – That’s the trial. The choice of doing something that is contrary to God is sin. I heard this the other day.. Something like, A Refiner who is refining silver knows it’s done when he can see his reflection, like a mirror. The same happens with God refining us..  We are refined until God sees the image of Jesus Christ. Does it suck while going through the process in the eyes of the flesh, of course it does. That’s why we pray to lead us not into temptation. And if we choose to be tempted by Satan and fall to sin, it sucks even more. But with the eyes of the Spirit on, we can smile in the flames of the trials and temptations, and dance.. knowing God’s loving hand is upon us.

What happens when we are refined? We take the Lord’s knowledge, lesson, etc. on that topic, and God will give us an opportunity to use it in order to help others in a similar fire (..so that we can later strengthen the brethren). Look at Job..  somewhere around chapters 20-25 I think, he is saying things like “Why did you even have me born? Wouldn’t it have better if I died in my mothers womb?” (something like that). As he’s saying that, I’m holding the pages of the bible, smiling.. “Job, You have helped trillions of people.”  And I saw Job smiling.

This does not mean we should just say “Well, God’s refining me, so this is ok!” Absolutely not! We cannot be ignorant of the devices of Satan. God doesn’t tempt, Satan does. The Glory of the Lord can refine us when we are presented with trials by searing our conscience. It’s gonna be tough, but glorious when we come out of it without sinning, ultimately choosing Him. It’ll be even harder if we choose sin though (consequences of sin). Thus, all things work together for good for those that love God. The wicked of Satan is the sin. We cannot trample on the blood of Christ and choose sin because we think God is refining us. The trial refines us.  When we choose wisely, more impurities are burned off:

Romans 6:1 What shall we say then? Shall we continue in sin that grace may abound? 2 Certainly not! How shall we who died to sin live any longer in it?

Proverbs 21:3 To do justice and judgment is more acceptable to the LORD than sacrifice.

James 1:2-4 My brethren, count it all joy when ye fall into divers temptations; Knowing this, that the trying of your faith worketh patience. But let patience have her perfect work, that ye may be perfect and entire, wanting nothing.

1 Peter 1:6-7 Wherein ye greatly rejoice, though now for a season, if need be, ye are in heaviness through manifold temptations: That the trial of your faith, being much more precious than of gold that perisheth, though it be tried with fire, might be found unto praise and honour and glory at the appearing of Jesus Christ:

The Lord will deliver us out of temptation if we choose Him over our selfish desires, thus Prov 21:3 as mentioned above. The Shield of Faith will quench the fiery darts so that we may just STAND.

The kingdom of God is at hand, here and now, and this my friends is very serious. Ha! A new catch phrase.. I’m going to start using that to close off my postings now.  Serious things!

Do you have any blessed trials you can share? What is the Spirit saying to you on this topic?

In love w/ Christ and you,

joseph