(Kindle only version. Book copy will be available in May which includes a discussion guide)
Below is an excerpt from the chapter titled “PROTECTION – Trust in His Strength.”
I love the Biblical story of Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego. Here were three young lads, captured by the horrid King Nebuchadnezzar and forced into slavery. When the king demanded that everyone bow down and worship an image of his god, the three boys refused. They were followers of the Lord. They were devoted to the God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob and they were ready for any consequence that the king might impose on them for their disobedience.
Angered, the king ordered that they be thrown into a raging hot furnace. But when the king looked into the flames, Shadrach Meshach, and Abednego were walking around, unbound and unharmed. They had been protected from the blaze of the furnace. Not only that, but an angel was accompanying them. God was in control. He protected them in the fire and even the King was amazed.
There are other stories in the Bible of God’s protection. Moses leading the Israelites and being guided by God’s pillar of clouds by day and protected by His pillar of fire at night. (Isn’t it interesting that God used FIRE to protect them). Daniel in the Lion’s Den. The disciples in the raging storm. Paul escaping from angry crowds. All of these accounts teach the same lessons – God is in control and we can trust Him as He turns our pain into purpose.
Right now, you or someone you cherish may be facing a life threatening situation. A cancer that was diagnosed in late stages. An accident that leaves you hospitalized. A pregnancy that is deteriorating the health of both mother and child. Whatever the alarm, God knows how much heat it takes to accomplish His purpose and He knows how little strength you have left.
For some reason, the fire through which you are walking is perfectly managed by God. He knows your strength limit. Ironic, isn’t it. When you feel at your weakest, that is actually a sign of God’s strength.
No matter how difficult the Crucible of our loss has been, my Refiner is still in control. No matter how brutal, ruthless or slow, the Crucible is an agonizing gift that is melting, molding and making me into something that my Refiner can really use.