Burning Up In the Atmosphere

"Every thing that may abide the fire, ye shall make it go through the fire, and it shall be clean..." (Numbers 31:23a)

There are times when you feel you need something and don't know what it is. You see a horizon and you know you want it but you don't know what it takes to get there. But you know your Father. That's as good a place as any to start. And remember: "for your Father knoweth what things ye have need of," (Matthew 6:8) and "before ye ask Him" no less. But in light of the aforementioned horizon, i.e. that thing you really, <em>really</em> want, know that were you to step into that season of life--the one in which you're enjoying the relationship or career or whatever beautiful thing that only He can give you--and not have gone through some sort of purifying process to make you stronger in light of the inevitable temptation you're going to face--you may well end up going back whence you came. The thought of losing the watershed is a harsh one indeed. This is why we have the Lord's patience to keep us from losing our head and also a piece of our heart.

"...nevertheless it shall be purified with the water of separation: and all that abideth not the fire ye shall make go through the water." (Numbers 31:23b)

I know that the above verse from Numbers points to a very specific thing from the Old Covenant. The ritual cleansing of the spoils of a battle with the Midianites. But in light of metaphor and symbol, know that anything you feel, be it the heat of (what you might think is) God's censure or the pressure of a flood, it's there for your good. It won't last. It can't. But "now for a season, if need be, ye are in heaviness through manifold temptations:" (1 Peter 1:6b) I'm sure Peter knew what he was talking about. Imagine slowly sinking into the water after you'd just stepped out of the boat to walk to Jesus. He continues on: "That the trial of your faith, being much more precious than of gold which perisheth, though it be tried with fire, might be found unto praise and honour and glory at the appearing of Jesus Christ:" (1:7) It certainly refers to the Second Coming, yes. But it also applies to the drawing closed of one season in favor of the dawning of another. When Jesus comes back around to give that much hoped-for blessing, you'll be able to bear it. And also enjoy it without having to worry about losing it. Strength is the natural outworking of the patience you expend waiting on the Lord.

"When thou passest through the waters, I will be with thee; and through the rivers, they shall not overflow thee: when thou walkest through the fire, thou shalt not be burned; neither shall the flame kindle upon thee." (Isaiah 43:2)

Peter had guts. So do you. It's one thing to take a step on the water and fail. Quite another (lesser) to not even consider doing something no one in history had ever done before. I'd wager to say the horizon shows itself to you because God's preparing you to reach out and grab it. Blessings to you.

An Idol is Nothing (The Spectrum of Idolatry part 7)

The Main Course (An Extended Metaphor)