I cry out to God and ask Him, “Why, Father? Why are you allowing this? Why is this happening to me?” I know He can control it and I even remind Him (you know...just in case He forgot what He's capable of…). “Lord you alone can take this away. So please just take it!”
And sometimes, He does.
And sometimes, He doesn't. And you know what? Even if He doesn't, He is still good.
He is still good when you don't know how you're going to pay your bills. He is still good when your relationships crumble. He is still good when the people who are supposed to support you let you down. He is still good when nothing else is.
And when we walk through these fires, as painful and exhausting as they are, we have a hope! The Bible says in Psalm 66:10, “For you, O God, have tested us; you have tried us as silver is tried.”
So I read this verse and thought “well...how is silver tried?” And here's what I learned (without getting very scientific...bear with me): basically it starts with some lead sulfide ore, which is rich in silver. But, in order to purify silver and make it shiny and beautiful, it has to go through a series of firings to literally burn off everything that isn't actually silver. After it has all been melted down, the silversmith blows air through it to blow off anything else that isn't pure silver.
And then I realized that I am just like the ore used to make silver. I'm covered in things that mask the original design God had for me because of my sin. And sometimes, even though it hurts like nothing else in the world, I have to walk through fire to be purified and to shine His light. Sometimes that's the only way.
Hillsong United released a song a couple of years ago called “Even When it Hurts”. In the second verse, the lyrics read, “even when it hurts like hell, I'll praise you”. Now, before you get upset about a worship song using the word “hell”, hear me out. Sometimes it really does hurt like hell—or as close as we can imagine to it. The prophet Habakkuk knew this and said in Habakkuk 3:17-18:
“Though the fig tree should not blossom, nor fruit be on the vines, the produce of the olive fail and the fields yield no food, the flock be cut off from the fold and there be no herd in the stalls, yet I will rejoice in the Lord; I will take joy in the God of my salvation.”
Yet I will rejoice. Even when everything that could go wrong is going wrong, I will rejoice. When there is no food, and no income and no way to get out of the fire, I will take joy. I'll praise Him. Because when all is lost, He is there. Even when it hurts like hell, I'll praise You.
He is refining us. Praise the Lord we are not finished yet.
In His Grip,