“He will sit like a refiner of silver, burning away the dross. He will purify the Levites, refining them like gold and silver, so that they may once again offer acceptable sacrifices to the Lord” (Malachi 3.3 NLT).
When I flew to Florida to train at gym, a spiritual storm that tested my faith began to build. I was away from my family, in unfamiliar territory, with unfamiliar people and learning an unfamiliar sport. My trainers worked diligently to prepare me for my fight, and I obediently did everything they asked of me. However, inside fear took a hold of me, and the night before my final training day in Florida, I snapped. Instead of kneeling on the floor of my hotel room, praying for God’s guidance and peace, I turned off my phone and booked a flight home. I blamed everyone for my fear, and I justified my actions. A week later God confronted my mistakes, and I confessed my trail of actions spawned by my lack of faith. I was afraid, and I pointed the finger at everyone else but myself. Finally, God got a hold of me with one simple truth: He had placed me there. If I was going to blame anyone, I would have to blame Him. God was putting me through a very humbling process that exposed the defenses I had built because I didn’t trust Him. God allows us to go through storms when He knows we are strong enough to persevere. He puts us through the fire because He is trying to purify us and shape us into His image. I know that trials are never easy and spiritual storms are confusing, but now I’m prepared with the knowledge that God is growing me. Instead of running away from the next storm, I will dig in my heals, cling onto God and allow the flames to burn off my sin.
God, I understand that You allow certain storms into my life. Although they each may appear different, they all are used to build my faith and shape me into Your image. Help me to trust You when I’m in the middle of the storm. Don’t let me build up defenses that would prevent the fires from purifying me. I pray this in Jesus’ name, Amen.