Finding Joy In The Furnace

Finding Joy In The Furnace

“We do this by keeping our eyes on Jesus, the champion who initiates and perfects our faith. Because of the joy awaiting him, he endured the cross, disregarding its shame. Now he is seated in the place of honor beside God’s throne.” – Hebrews 12:2 NLT

This past Sunday at church I had an interesting conversation with one of our pastors. Because we often share our struggles I’m privy to what is happening in his life. Let me just tell you that he is going through a furnace, there is fire and then there is a furnace. Fire just causes first degree burns while a furnace causes third degree burns (Not even an ICU candidate). He spoke about the above scripture and how it motivates him to endure the furnace. Basically what he was saying is that the current afflictions are not distracting him from looking forward to the rewards that will be revealed. He acknowledges their presence but does not allow them to weigh him down or to change his confession. I was challenged and encouraged at the same time because of his authentic faith. One thing I’ve realized is that fruits of authentic faith are magnified through storms, while absence of fruits is also revealed by storms. This is when scripture is supposed to come to life. This is when you are not just a hearer of the Word, but a doer of the Word. But where does this confidence and hope come from? Why do others crumble and fall while others soar and reach even greater heights during trials? “And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose.”(Romans 8:28 NIV). 

The same Sunday I also had a conversation with an evangelist (what can I say? I roll with giants) and she was speaking about this scripture. If we truly know and trust GOD then this scripture should automatically put our hearts at ease when we are going through the most. The reason we are troubled is because this scripture has not come alive in our hearts. He says all things work together for our good. This means the furnace the above mentioned man of GOD is going through is working out for his good. Every single pain, struggle and hardship we go through is working for us. Like our master we learn obedience through our sufferings. Same way Joseph’s trials worked out for our good. So to answer my earlier question about where the confidence comes from, their confidence is in the promises of the above scriptures. 

Christ endured the cross for the price of being with the father and Joseph endured for the salvation of his family and the world. So your current affliction doesn’t mean you are no longer in the will of God for your life. You are exactly where GOD intended you to be. He is a GOD that works out everything in line with His purpose for our lives (Ephesians 1:11). I pray that GOD may give us a personal revelation of the above scriptures so that we too may consider it pure joy when we go through trials.

Your current affliction doesn’t mean you are no longer in the will of God for your life. You are exactly where GOD intended you to be.

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