Saturday, November 6, 2010

Refined by Fire

Journaling from a few weeks ago (Egypt):
Felucca trip up the Nile. 3 days of doing absolutely nothing except relaxing, swimming in the Nile and praying::
So many thoughts and prayers are being sent up right now. Floating here, rocking gently in the water. I'm discontent with myself. I need God to meet me in my inadequacies because I am unable to fix them myself. God, I want to see you. You say, Receive your sight, your faith has healed you. Meet me in this quiet place. Touch the deepest part of my heart. I realize over and over that I cannot do this on my own. Show me my place here-in this group, on this trip. Don't let life just pass me by. Surprise me with your creation, the vast beauty to explore. Heal my heart and give me new eyes to see.

This is perhaps his response:
“These are they who have come out of the great tribulation; they have washed their robes and made them white in the blood of the Lamb. Therefore, “they are before the throne of God
and serve him day and night in his temple;
and he who sits on the throne
will shelter them with his presence.
‘Never again will they hunger;
never again will they thirst.
The sun will not beat down on them,’
nor any scorching heat.
For the Lamb at the center of the throne
will be their shepherd;
‘he will lead them to springs of living water.’
‘And God will wipe away every tear from their eyes.
Revelation 7

The Creator God has been guiding my heart, mind and steps to produce something in me that is of greater worth than gold, refined by fire.
It would be easy if God forced us to love him. But to be presented with the choice to accept or reject his love-how much more valuable:
"For up to this very point, for this very point, he has been educating us, leading us, pushing us, driving us, enticing us, that we may choose him and his will, and so be tenfold more his children, of his own best making, in the freedom of the will found our own first in its loving sacrifice to him, for which in his grand fatherhood he has been thus working from the foundations of the earth, then we could be in the most ecstatic worship flowing from the divinest impulse, without this willing sacrifice" (Unspoken Sermons, George MacDonald)

I am no longer in that place of loss and confusion, yet I know those situations are never wasted. God isn't vindictive or crude. Every struggle, while not necessarily caused by God, can be used by him to draw us closer to his heart, which is when and where we find purpose and hope. Blessings friends and family, may this hope work in us and in this team.

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