So be truly glad. There is wonderful joy ahead, even though you have to endure many trials for a little while. These trials will show that your faith is genuine. It is being tested as fire tests and purifies gold—though your faith is far more precious than mere gold. So when your faith remains strong through many trials, it will bring you much praise and glory and honor on the day when Jesus Christ is revealed to the whole world. 1 Peter 1:6-7
There are all sorts of things that I can be really glad about! The prospect of the Saints winning another Super Bowl makes me happy, and the thought of riding horses again makes me really happy (a true horsemen may get rid of his horse, but never his saddle). And the thought that I would celebrate a Super Bowl victory with a horse back ride in some beautiful 70 degree whether makes me really, really happy!
But the idea of of being thrown into a furnace of fire just to prove something? Who in their right mind would be truly glad about that? People get psychiatric treatment for enjoying stuff like that!
Yet, God says that genuine faith looks for the opportunity to be proven. It wants to be tested and purified. It knows that just as fire tests and purifies gold, facing trouble tests the authenticity of our faith. And our faith is more precious then mere gold. When it remains strong through trials, it brings the reward of God’s praise, glory, and honor.
Think for a moment of all those who might have doubted the authenticity of your faith. Do you think that your faith is proven genuine when things are as smooth as Stein’s syrup poured over a hot, buttered biscuit? Of course it isn’t! It’s only when things get really rough, hard, difficult – and it feels like all hell has come against you – that your faith is being proven.
It’s when you’ve been thrown into the furnace of affliction, and your health is taking a toll (Isaiah 48:10). It’s when you’ve lost a loved one to an unexpected death, or a spouse, son or daughter, brother or sister, or a friend has abandoned you in your greatest time of need that you are salted with fire (Mark 9:49). It’s when you are falsely accused, slandered, and persecuted that the purity of your heart and the authenticity of your faith are proven. Fire will test every man’s work (1 Corinthians 13:3).
Consider it pure joy, my brothers and sisters, whenever you face trials of many kinds, because you know that the testing of your faith produces… James 1:2-3
SO, WHERE’S THE JOY IN IT?
WHAT SHOULD I DO IF I’M IN A FIERY TRIAL RIGHT NOW?
- STOP CRYING!
- GET UP!
- GO ON!
Heavenly Father,Thank you for trusting me so much that you would allow me to walk through this fiery trial. I know that you mean it for my good, and for your glory. Thank you for the strength to endure what is being cultivated in me right now. Thank you for purifying my faith — faith with which I can conquer mountains. By the strength of Your amazing grace, I choose to stop crying, get up, and go on! In doing this I know that I, and all those who look upon me, will be utterly AMAZED. Amen.