Sunday, July 1, 2007

Beloved, Do Not Be Surprised

Beloved, do not be surprised at the fiery ordeal among you which comes upon you for your testing as though some strange thing were happening to you; (1Pe 4:12)

I thank God for this verse.

I think of it often.

Fiery ordeals, pressures, afflictions, trials and tribulations are not strange.

I need them and so do you.

My first reaction may sometimes be, “Stop! Go away!”

But then I remember that I must be refined.

I must not shrink back but rather lean into troubles as one leans into a strong wind.

We must let problems and tests do their purifying work.

We must let them blow the chaff away.

Many verses speak of being pressed by troubles and tribulation.
Here are a few:

…through many tribulations we must enter the kingdom of God.
(Act 14:22)

In the world you have tribulation: but take courage; I have overcome the world. (Joh 16:33)

For indeed, when we were with you, we kept telling you in advance that we were going to suffer affliction; so it came to pass, as you know. (1Th 3:4)


Lies and doubts often come and try to tell us that if God ‘really” loved us then He wouldn't allow all these "bad" things to happen.
Don't believe the lies.

God knows exactly what we need and when we need it.

He knows the best way to bring about His glory in our lives.

Don't put up a fight- God will have His way.
I will leave you with a poem I came across this week by Louise S. Pridgeon:

Pressed out of measure and pressed to all length,
Pressed so intensely it seems beyond strength;
Pressed in the body and pressed in the soul,
Pressed in the mind till the dark surges roll.
Pressed from foes, and a pressure from friends,
Pressure on pressure, till life nearly ends.
Pressed into knowing no helper but God;
Pressed into loving the staff and the rod.
Pressed into liberty where nothing clings;
Pressed into faith for impossible things.
Pressed into living a life for the Lord,
Pressed into living a Christ -life out poured!

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