Holiness: Through the Fire, Part III
As I wrote in a previous blog entry, Hope for Israel celebrated its 10 year-anniversary this past year; these were an amazing 10 years, filled with “ups” and “downs”, but where I also saw the Lord taking a small seed and growing it into something bigger. He has brought hope to many people in the Land of Israel and around the world through the wonderful opportunities the ministry has had.
In my last blog entry, I shared about one of the greatest challenges I’ve faced in the 10 years since Hope for Israel began – my baby girl had a bypass surgery when she was only 10 weeks old. It was a deeply personal trial that left me both physically and emotionally exhausted. I shared that, at one point, I asked God “Why?” and He gave me a vision of a bathtub filled with filthy water. He then removed the plug, drained the dirty water, and replenished the tub with fresh, clean water.
What is the connection between the two you may ask? One of the things the Lord has shown me through this time is that, as followers of the Messiah, we are all on a journey, a journey of faith – a journey were it doesn’t matter how much you know, how much you do, how many years you have been a follower of the Messiah, if you are in full time ministry or not (although we are all in a full time ministry), young or old etc. On this journey, we all go through testing and trials. These are times by which the LORD will allow us to go through the fire in order to reflect Himself in our lives. None of us are immune to the process of refining!
I think of many examples in Scripture of great men of God who feared the fire of trials and tribulation. In fact, as I was reading through 1 Kings 18, I realized that even the greatest of God’s servants are tempted to run from the heat of the fire. One of the things I saw in the above Scripture is that God always allows new challenges to come into our lives. In the story, Elijah challenges Obadiah to go and tell king Ahab that Elijah is coming to see him. Obadiah, who was a great man of God, a hero of the time after hiding 100 prophets from Jezebel, was filled with great fear; he was worried that Elijah would disappear and that King Ahab would kill him. In this story, we see that regardless of what we did in the past, there is always more room for us to grow in our spiritual maturity and in our faith in the LORD.
And now I ask you: What is the Lord calling you to do? Are you willing to do it, regardless of the possible fire that you will have to walk through? Or are you running away, fearful of the heat of tribulation?
Trust your God, that He will bring you through the fire, even more like Him than before you went through it!
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