Into the fire

Isaiah 48:10 states “Behold, I have refined you, but not as silver;
I have tested you in the furnace of affliction.—

This last refinement started around Mother's Day and ended about May 28th..

With refinement comes grieving because in the process we are losing something. This was a VERY long and painful process it brought up dealing with scoffers, mockers and imposters,my physical limitations and lack of food.I knew God was refining me and doing a work in me. He was answering my prayers of; I desperately want to follow your will for my life, direct my steps, take me I am the clay. Mold me, rid me of whatever it is that entangles me. I want to be obedient to you and leave the consequences to you.

 In 2 timothy 3:12-14 Paul tells timothy --In fact, everyone who wants to live a godly life in Christ Jesus will be persecuted, while   evildoers and impostors will go from bad to worse, deceiving and being deceived. But as for you, continue in what you have learned and have become convinced of, because you know those from whom you learned it. This scripture is encouraging yet discouraging.As I have shared in previous posts I have a diagnosis of PTSD which makes the refinement process all the much harder. I need to move past the feelings of terror brought on from my experiences in order to become bolder in my faith and obediently follow Jesus. I struggle with the gray areas of life and loving my enemies and praying for those who persecute me is definitely a HUGE gray area for me. It is so difficult to navigate these muddy waters.Jesus tells us If the world hates you, remember that it hated me first.  The world would love you as one of its own if you belonged to it, but you are no longer part of the world. I chose you to come out of the world, so it hates you. (John 15:18-19) terrifying for a person who has a past full of trauma.

We can learn a lot from children’s nursery rhymes take humpty dumpty for instance. Most of us know this nursery rhyme; he had a great fall. all the kings horses and all the kings men couldn’t put him back together again. We are kinda like humpty dumpty we fall into millions of pieces look for ways to be pieced together. Along comes Jesus he can put us back together some respond, some don’t. I didn’t grow up in church nor did I attend regularly as an adult. In my experience I have found people get fed up with “organized religion” then they give up on God. I can’t stand the hypocrisy of religion either but I didn’t give up on God. Although I can make the distinction that if a church is no good it is not God’s fault. I still think church should be clear of mockers, scoffers and imposters. I have deemed church as a safe place. I have collided with the imposters and it threw me off kilter. I have to figure out how to cope amongst the imposters at a place I deemed safe. The old me would have just disappeared but I REALLY like the church I attend. My old coping mechanism is not an option. The reality is the church is full of humpty dumpties so it makes sense I would eventually run into a few imposters.. Superficial relationships fall under the gray area. I do not know how to have them; I am what people consider deep. I learned I am wasting too much energy on people who do not want to be my friends. I learned I am not being ungodly because I do not wish to hang out with certain people or develop friendships with them nor them with me.God calls me to love them and show them the same mercy and grace he has shown me. I can do that.

A new bible study started at my church and I had no choice but to deal with the imposters. I didn’t want to sit with them and I had no idea how to handle it. There was a lot of chatter in my head. Needless to say I had a panic attack; God showed up as per usual and saw me through. I have learned through this refinement some are a stumbling block for me because they are way too wrapped up in their own stuff. I do not like leaving people behind however sometimes that is what you need to do

I try to live in the hope that my family will change then BAM reality hits and the hope is lost. I learned through this refinement God will woo my family and make a path for the next generation. I have to remain hopeful they will hear, see and follow yet free will can be a real hope killer.

I had to ration my meals and went hungry for a bit. I was thinking of buying slim fast not to lose weight but to suppress my appetite. I knew with my history of an eating disorder this probably would not be a good idea. But I needed to do something to curb my hunger. I did what any god seeking person would do I cried out to God.

My new job is pretty physical and my body needed to adjust. I thought I exercise I should be ok.Well I wasn’t. Being tired and hungry in addition to what else was going on is not a great combination. I did what any god seeking person would do and CLUNG on for dear life and PRAYED and PRAYED….

I have visited these places before when I had to deal with loving those unconditionally who love me conditionally or not at all , James 1:2-4 tells us 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 perseverance. Let perseverance finish its work so that you may be mature and complete, not lacking anything….I wouldn’t say I felt joy during this refinement but I felt God in the midst of this tumultuous storm, the testing certainly produced perseverance which will make me a step closer to being mature and complete. People may not follow as I go forth and become bolder in my faith.. This terrifies me because in my life experience those who do not like me tend to make my life miserable and those who I thought were friends believe the lies being told about me. As my mom use to say well they weren't your friends to begin with & she is absolutely right but it still stings quite a bit..

1 Peter 1:7 states 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.

God provided abundantly and in some unexpected ways. He directed my steps and through him I figured out how to live amongst the imposters. Most importantly my faith remained strong through this tumultuous storm and it will bring much praise and glory and honor on the day when Jesus Christ is revealed to the whole world…

 I came out the other side much better than when I went in. I have realized it is ok to leave some behind in order for me to grow. I also realized they aren’t as concerned about my feelings as I am concerned about theirs. Any kind of action or comments they chose to take or make is about them. Most importantly prayer is powerful it is how we communicate with God and hears us…after all is said and done “All I can do is stand firmly in my hopes for them (scoffers,mocker, and imposters) with compassion”--Bryant McGill

As for me I am humpty dumpty I sat on the wall, had a great fall. all the kings horses and all the kings men couldn’t put me back together again. The good news is here I sit on the wall cracked some pieces still missing but PRAISE god he is and will put me back together again.


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