"He will sit as a smelter and purifier of silver, and He will purify the sons of Levi and refine them like gold and silver, so that they may present to the LORD offerings in righteousness” Malachi 3:3
I was reminded as I was reading the journey of Much Afraid in Hinds’ Feet on High Places -by Hannah Hurnard that the love of Christ is beautiful, but we so often forget the other side of it. The quote below from the book comes during the journey to the High Places when the Shepherd reminds Much Afraid what love really is.
He had said, “Love is beautiful, but is is also terrible – terrible in it’s determination to allow nothing blemished or unworthy to remain in the beloved.”
When she remembered this, Much Afraid thought with a little shiver in her heart, “He will never be content until he makes me what he is determined that I ought to be,” and because she was still Much Afraid and not yet ready to change her name, she added with a pang of fear, “I wonder what he plans to do next, and if it will hurt very much indeed?” (pg179)
I suppose that there have been times in my life the thought of God’s refining fire caused fear in my heart, but no longer. Today I understand that in order to rid my heart of the unworthy and the blemishes it requires also be willing to walk through the fire.
Is it easy? No! But more than anything I desire to be a disciple of Jesus. I want to be like Him. I want to be the woman I ought to be and from where I am standing right now there is a whole lot of refining to go through until I get there.
We don’t like being reminded of the refining process, but it is promised to those whom God calls His Children.
"Some of those who have insight will fall, in order to refine, purge and make them pure until the end time…” Daniel 11:35
"And I will bring the third part through the fire, Refine them as silver is refined, And test them as gold is tested. They will call on My name, And I will answer them; I will say, 'They are My people,' And they will say, 'The LORD is my God.' "Zechariah 13:9
In this you greatly rejoice, even though now for a little while, if necessary, you have been distressed by various trials, so that the proof of your faith, being more precious than gold which is perishable, even though tested by fire, may be found to result in praise and glory and honor at the revelation of Jesus Christ; 1 Peter 1:6,7