Monday, July 2, 2018

Failure, Fire and Fullfillment

The Refiner's Fire
Trials? Tribulations? Testing by fire?

Sound familiar? Widowhood qualifies as all of the above!

Have you ever admitted or even considered that widowhood is a time of trial and testing--that its a season of suffering? I don't know why it took me a long time to see that; maybe the over-used term "denial" applies and I couldn't wrap my head around it. Maybe I thought I was so strong and that my faith was so strong and superior that I would easily rise above it. Mostly though, I was in shock and couldn't believe my husband had died; I sure couldn't sit down with myself and explain to myself that I was actually suffering from a trial of life.

With God, though, our sorrow will one day be wiped away. Right now we're in the flames and pain; and if you're like me they're not only fueled by tragic circumstances-- my own failures threaten to consume me too.

This selection from Psalm 66:10 and 12 brought me through the fire to a future of hope.
You, O God, have tested us; You have refined us as silver is refined ... We went through fire and through water, but You brought us out to rich fulfillment. (NKJV)

Now take a look a the entire Psalm 66 either by yourself or as a Bible study or devotional with your widows group. Make 2 columns on a paper or marker board: 
1). PRAISE and 2). PAIN
  • Look at each phrase or verse and decide in which column it fits. 
  • When you've divided up all the verses ask which column is longer. 
  • What does that tell us about the bigger picture of God's plan and involvement in our lives? 
  • Which verses stand out to you most of all and speak to your experience? 
  • Which one verse provides you with the most hope and promise? 
  • Jot your favorite verse down on a 3x5 card. Keep it in your pocket, tape it to your steering wheel, post it as your status on Facebook or do anything that will serve to remind you of God's faithful fulfillment throughout the day. 
Today is the day when pain can take off it's disguise and praise can start to rise. God understands the emotional roller coaster of grief and the Bible never says that its sinful to have feelings. God is touched by our infirmities. And he touches us in our weakness with the fulfillment of the power and promises of His Word when we take it to heart (or pocket or steering wheel) :) Please try this, I think you'll be greatly encouraged when you do.  ferree

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