The soles of my shoes threaten to melt into the concrete. It’s hot, oppressively hot. The heat index was 112 last week. The south is almost inhabitable this month, especially for someone with a disease whose symptoms are worsened by heat.
Lamentations 3:56, “You hear my plea: do not ignore my cry for relief.” HCSB
About five years ago, I discovered a passion for container gardening. Containers are more manageable than flower beds since, well since they are contained. After I was diagnosed with myasthenia gravis, it was necessary to adapt all of my activities. This year I planted succulents in my pots. Truthfully, planting was beyond my strength capabilities so I borrowed a few sets of arms from my loved ones. The succulents are thriving in this heat.
Isaiah 58:11, “And the Lord shall guide thee continually, and satisfy thy soul in drought, and make fat thy bones: and thou shall be like a watered garden, and like a spring of water, whose waters fail not.” KJV
— Vickie Henderson (@rightsideuplife) August 15, 2015
THE HEAT IS ON
Precious metals are refined with fire to bring the impurities to the top. When the dross is wiped away, the metal shines. Apparently, it is the only effective way. Everything precious must be refined by fire. Fire contained is beneficial, fire uncontained destroys. Our God is a consuming fire.
Hebrews 12:29, “for our God is a consuming fire.” ESV
WITHER OR THRIVE?
Inevitably, your life will be heated up. How will you respond? Will you wither or thrive? Succulents thrive because they store water in their leaves. I am so thankful for the stores of living water I had before I got sick. I had God’s word in my head and in my heart and it sustained me. I had a network of brothers and sisters in Christ who ministered to me. Most importantly, I had a deep trust in the One who is always faithful, even when my circumstances threatened to overwhelm me.
Romans 8:28, “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.” NIV
God truly uses all things for His divine purposes. Believer, believe it. And yes it means all things. It means your divorce, your addiction, your abortion, your grief, your diagnosis, your job loss, your betrayal, your tragedy. When the Israelites were set free from captivity in Egypt, they left with great treasures. Don’t leave your spoils behind. Leave Egypt because the promised land is waiting, but take the riches with you. God will use you to minister to others who have been through similar circumstances if you cooperate with his refining. Don’t waste your trials and sufferings.
2 Corinthians 1:4, “He comes alongside us when we go through hard times, and before you know it, he brings us alongside someone else who is going through hard times so that we can be there for that person just as God was there for us.” MSG
He redeems ALL things! Will you let Him?