A diamond is described as one of the world's most precious gems.
Did you know that a diamond's crystal structure is "hard" yet "soft"? This means that it can indeed be broken, but guess what? When a diamond is broken, it opens to reveal a much refined and purer from of itself.
to bring to a finer state or form by purifying.
He will refine us as he did the Levites in Malachi 3:3, which reads "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"
- Increase our dependence Him. This we learn from 2 Cor 1:8 -10, which reads "8 We think you ought to know, dear brothers and sisters, about the trouble we went through in the province of Asia. We were crushed and overwhelmed beyond our ability to endure, and we thought we would never live through it. 9 In fact, we expected to die. But as a result, we stopped relying on ourselves and learned to rely only on God, who raises the dead. 10 And he did rescue us from mortal danger, and he will rescue us again. We have placed our confidence in him, and he will continue to rescue us. "
- To adjust us more to His Will. This God teaches us through the life of Peter in 1 Peter 4:1-2, which reads "1 So then, since Christ suffered physical pain, you must arm yourselves with the same attitude he had, and be ready to suffer, too. For if you have suffered physically for Christ, you have finished with sin. 2 You won’t spend the rest of your lives chasing your own desires, but you will be anxious to do the will of God"
- To enable us to comfort others as he shows and teaches us how. This we are thought in 2 Corinthians 1:3-5, which reads "3 All praise to God, the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ. God is our merciful Father and the source of all comfort. 4 He comforts us in all our troubles so that we can comfort others. When they are troubled, we will be able to give them the same comfort God has given us. 5 For the more we suffer for Christ, the more God will shower us with his comfort through Christ.
- To teach us humility. This we are taught through his feeding of the Israelites in Deuteronomy 8:16, which reads "He fed you with manna in the wilderness, a food unknown to your ancestors. He did this to humble you and test you for your own good."
Looking through the bible we can learn of a few people who went through some tremendous refining process. Starting with Joseph, which we read in Genesis 37:5-9, 28, 39:20, 42:6,9. He was sold into slavery by his brothers, and sent into prison, and eventually became the greatest figures in Egypt. And Job? Where do I begin with his purification process? Please read The Book of Job for completion.
- Trust God, as we are taught in 1 Peter 4:19, which reads "So if you are suffering in a manner that pleases God, keep on doing what is right, and trust your lives to the God who created you, for he will never fail you." Isn't that awesome? Our God is ever so faithful.
- Keep seeking God's face, keep having conversations with him, in the midst of it all, as we are taught in James 5:13, which reads "Are any of you suffering hardships? You should pray. Are any of you happy? You should sing praises."
- Glorify and honour God, even when the heat and pressure seems unbearable, for he Will be there in the fire with you. This we are taught in Daniel 3: 19 - 25 "19 Nebuchadnezzar was so furious with Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego that his face became distorted with rage. He commanded that the furnace be heated seven times hotter than usual. 20 Then he ordered some of the strongest men of his army to bind Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego and throw them into the blazing furnace. 21 So they tied them up and threw them into the furnace, fully dressed in their pants, turbans, robes, and other garments. 22 And because the king, in his anger, had demanded such a hot fire in the furnace, the flames killed the soldiers as they threw the three men in. 23 So Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego, securely tied, fell into the roaring flames.
24 But suddenly, Nebuchadnezzar jumped up in amazement and exclaimed to his advisers, “Didn’t we tie up three men and throw them into the furnace?”
“Yes, Your Majesty, we certainly did,” they replied.
25 “Look!” Nebuchadnezzar shouted. “I see four men, unbound, walking around in the fire unharmed! And the fourth looks like a god"
Along with the above, today, I learnt, a greater lesson; and it is that sometimes, the best thing I can and should to do under the intense, heat, pressure, pain, turmoil and all that comes along with God's purification and refining process, is to STAND STILL. When I can no longer bear the heat, the pressure and the pain, to simply stand still in Him and let my maker, the master crafter get on with the job of doing what he is wonderfully good at; working everything together for my good (even the pain) to reveal the beautiful diamond he has created me to be, which in due time, will be revealed for the world to see.
Ps... D... thanks for this afternoon, you helped me more than I can ever explain or thank you for... :-)))
Have a wonderful time whilst God is purifying to reveal the diamond in you; not forgetting to keep making him famous through every single "ouch" along the way.