“Kaleb accidentally stepped on my glasses,” said our daughter Kyla. Though the lenses weren’t cracked, I immediately noticed the purple frames were sitting lopsided on her face.
“I tried bending them, but it didn’t work,” she explained. So it was off to LensCrafters to get them back into proper shape. Once there, the technician placed Kyla’s specks into a machine and elevated the temperature. This was done to soften the frames and make them more easily bendable.
Some people who wear glasses elect to complete this process right at home by immersing their bent frames in hot water. Once the plastic softens some, they go right ahead and gently twist the glasses back into shape, without breaking them.
I hear it works pretty well.
My husband Kenya and I, however, decided to trust the professionals to avoid any costly blunders on our end. We’ll leave the experimentation for another time and place.
Anyway, before the helpful associate at LensCrafters made the adjustments, he warned that, despite his know-how, the glasses could still break. Even in capable hands, the force he used to realign the frames could potentially destroy them. Thankfully, all went well. The pressure didn’t break them and within five minutes, Kyla’s frames were as good as new.
Pressure and heat, when applied in just the right amounts, can do good things. Aren’t you glad there’s no guesswork in God’s process of applying pressure and heat to refine and whip us into shape spiritually?
He knows precisely what we need—and how much of it we can handle—to make the crooked places straight in our lives and get us into proper alignment. Sometimes, due to our limited understanding and unreliable human emotions, we feel like the trial is too much. We believe the intensity of the test is too great. We assume the heat of the furnace of affliction is much too hot to endure.
I know I’ve felt like that numerous times in my life.
There have been seasons when I believed, surely, what I was going through would break me. But guess what? I’m still here. I made it through. Not only that, but I am better for having gone through those things. My faith is stronger and my relationship with God is closer.
Friend, you and I are in very capable hands. God never makes mistakes. He is fully aware that through trials, no matter how uncomfortable they are, our faith is refined. Through struggles, we are equipped to fulfill our divine destiny.
Despite the trial's difficulty level, if God let you come face-to-face with it, be assured that He's placed within you everything you need to endure and come out victoriously on the other end.
This trial will not defeat you. It will prepare you for destiny! If God allowed it, He knows you can take it.
In 1 Peter 1:6 the Bible doesn't tell us we must inevitably drag our feet, hang our heads and barely make it through hardship. It says, "In all this you greatly rejoice, though now for a little while you may have had to suffer grief in all kinds of trials."
Verse 7 then goes on to explain that those very trials come to prove the genuineness of our faith. It says, " These have come so that the proven genuineness of your faith—of greater worth than gold, which perishes even though refined by fire—may result in praise, glory and honor when Jesus Christ is revealed."
The scripture I just mentioned was written by the Apostle Peter to Christians scattered throughout various regions of the Roman Empire. They were outcasts, persecuted for their faith and enduring all sorts of hardships for the cause of Christ. In the midst of it all, Peter told them to rejoice.
If the early Christians could rejoice in suffering from a place of genuine faith in God, we can do it also. That's the way true faith behaves. True faith doesn’t give up in hard times. It doesn’t quit during uncomfortable seasons. It doesn’t walk away during inconvenient periods. It doesn’t ever wave the white flag of surrender.
Genuine faith, even when the heat and pressure is on, behaves like Romans 5:3-4, which says, “…but we also glory in our sufferings, because we know that suffering produces perseverance; perseverance, character; and character, hope.”
True faith is what showed up in the attitudes of Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego in Daniel, chapter 3:17 -18. They told King Nebuchadnezzar that God was able to deliver them from the fiery furnace, but even if He didn’t, they refused to bow down.
That's what faith looks like.
God desires that you have authentic faith in Him, even if the bills aren’t paid; even when you’re sick in your body; even when the prayer request hasn’t been answered; even when you don’t see your way clearly.
Still believe. Continue to trust. Don’t doubt. Know that God is more than able, all-powerful and a worker of miracles—whether or not you have received yours yet.
Today, you may be in your own fiery furnace. If so, refuse to bow down to discouragement, disillusionment, fear and hopelessness. Remind yourself that, just as the Lord was with those three Hebrew boys, He is in the fiery furnace with you too.
God will never leave you in your affliction. He doesn’t abandon you in hard times. Rather, He strengthens you as you go through and empowers you to come out better. So hang in there. You can take it!
To help you stand strong, I’m stirring 2 Corinthians 4:17 NIV into your cup of inspiration, which reminds you that, “For our light and momentary troubles are achieving for us an eternal glory that far outweighs them all.”
As you drink down the contents of your cup, know that these tests and trials will not break you down. They will build you up and move you along the path of your predestined purpose.
And here’s some more good news. The same God that delivered those faith-filled Hebrew boys out of the fiery furnace, without a hair on their head being singed, is able to deliver you.
Right now, He’s testing your faith.
He wants you to trust Him when you can’t trace Him. Believe the way is made when you can’t see one. Declare that it is fixed while it is still broken. Speak healing over your body while you’re yet sick. Rejoice for your breakthrough even if you feel broken down.
Have you got a “He’s still able” praise today?
Get one in your spirit, because that’s what you need to sustain you through this process, on your way to the promise. Your faith is what will carry you through.
In the meantime, God knows you can take it, because He dwells with you every step of the way.
Now let’s pray.
God, this season of testing is difficult, but I know it’s working for my good. Please help me to go through it with a good attitude, knowing that, if You allowed it, You have empowered me to handle it. In the end, I believe I will be better equipped to fulfill my predestined purpose. In all things, I fully trust in Your purpose and plan for my life. In Jesus’ name, Amen.
As always, thanks for reading and until next time... may today's cup of inspiration uplift, encourage, and empower you!
If you need prayer, don't hesitate to request it. I would be honored to stand in faith with you. I know that prayer works. CLICK HEREto learn how to submit your prayer request.