Author: Joseph Mesa
“Look, I have refined you, but not like silver;
I have purified you in the furnace of affliction.
For my own sake—Yes, for my own sake!—I’m doing it; indeed, how can I be profaned?”
Isaiah 48:10-11 (ISV)
“We crush grapes to create wine. We grind wheat to make bread. And God breaks our self-will to make us useful vessels for His kingdom.”
“We crush grapes to create wine. We grind wheat to make bread. And God breaks our self-will to make us useful vessels for His kingdom.” When I was a baby Christian, I continually asked the Lord why there is pain in this life. "What is the purpose of pain, God?" I'll never forget the words from a great pastor and good friend of mine that I quoted above. I've learned that within the process of growing as a Christian, there is pain or as I like to call it: productive pain. Pain is sometimes used to shape us and mold our character more like God's. Adversity can be a gift. It can be a blessing from Almighty God to prepare us for what He is calling us to do.
We are so valuable to Him that He does whatever it takes to equip us to become who He created us to be.
There was a time while on a trip to Africa, that I became very sick. For over a month, I had trouble breathing and my chest and throat hurt severely every time I coughed. My brothers in Christ, who I loved dearly, were great prayer support. But without my family, there were times I just wanted to give up, forget this trip, and go back home. My pastors there and my mom were ready to get me a ticket back to America because they had no idea what else to do. I had thoughts of death, thoughts of giving up, and even thoughts of leaving the faith. One night, I finally got up from my bed, walked straight to my prayer room, knelt down and asked the Lord, "Why are you allowing this? I can't do it." Then the Lord spoke to me and said, "You are here for a reason. Are you just going to leave?" I took those words to heart. There was no way I was going to abort the plan that God had for me. I had to endure two more days of being sick and then by the third day I was healed! After making the decision to stay, the Lord showed me my calling, molded my character, showed me how to be a leader, and much more. In the 6 months I spent there, I learned so much and was so glad I didn't leave. We have to be careful of our self-will and our desire to act independently of God. We need to seek God's will in every situation even when there sometimes is pain.
God wants us to purpose to bring every area of our lives in submission to Him, fully trusting Him, and completely surrendering ourselves to Him.
As we continue to walk in 2019, the words “I have purified you in the furnace of affliction” are being spoken. The definition of purified simply means having had contaminants removed; cleansed. In order to leave a legacy with God, or to make a great impact in 2019, we have to be in harmony with the Lord. We have to come to a place of brokenness. Christians who refuse to have their self-will broken by God will never reach their full potential or receive all that God has for them. You can have talents, skills, abilities, experiences, and looks but to not be used by God would be to miss the glory and honor that God has for you.
To be broken by God is an act of love for you from your Heavenly Father. Don't resist it.
This year, we are on the move. The Lord is ready to stretch us, to give us more dreams and more blessings. But that requires faith and sometimes pain: productive pain. There is no such thing as an insignificant person to Him. You are important in God’s eyes and He has an incredible plan for you.
Remember: I CAN. I WILL. THE END.
I declare today that I will NOT quit. I WILL stay the course no matter what comes in my life. I WILL trust you Jesus for you are my reward. Though the enemy may knock me down 7,000 times I WILL get back up 7,000 times, for you are with me. You are my safe tower, my refuge, my God. You, Lord, will align my steps. As you go, I go. I will not seek anything else but You. For you are my King. Amen!