Refinement 101

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“…the proof of your faith, being more precious than gold…” 1 Peter 1:6-7


Residing in you is a hidden lode of faith. Your Holy Prospector knows of your value in Christ and desires to reveal these rich pockets. But first, He must bring it to the surface in order to be used. 


Our faith refinement is much like the process for gold.  It begins with crushing and milling. Crushing our faith never destroys it, although it usually feels like it at the time. In fact, it is actually the opposite



For gold, a device called a crusher is actually placed on site of the mine to help break the gold apart from the lesser ore compounds. In early history, miners used something much like a mortar and pestle approach. Now, hydraulic technology has introduced two types of mobile milling machine that can crush the mineral into smaller bulk. One is called a jaw crusher for initial crushing. 

 In our own lives, we have our own jaw crusher onsite. It is in the form of our own sin. We try really hard, yet seem to fall into the same sin again and again. David knew the crushing of his own iniquity and cried out to God for deliverance.  


“For my iniquities are gone over my head; As a heavy burden they weigh too much for me.  I am benumbed and badly crushed; I groan because of the agitation of my heart.  Lord, all my desire is before You; And my sighing is not hidden from You.  My heart throbs, my strength fails me; And the light of my eyes, even that has gone from me” (Psalm 38:4, 8-10).


Yes, our own sin can begin the crushing stage of refinement. But, I have found that actually, it’s just God’s way of leading us back to Himself. 


We must first remember the difference His voice of correction, not condemnation. God’s voice always points out specific sin, not the general lot of it. A voice that nit-picks your every action is not the voice of the Holy One. When He lives inside, He takes care of the entirety of sin. Your responsibility is just to respond in confession to the individual sin He reminds you of. 


As long as we want to perfect our own way of life rather than dissolving into His, He will lead us back to the jaw crusher. Modifying behavior can’t achieve perfection. Yet, if we insist upon using this approach, He will allow us to keep trying. Once we realize (yet again!) that, in our own strength, perfection is hopeless, He will shut off jaw crusher of sin. 


“When I kept silent about my sin, my body wasted away through my groaning all day long.  For day and night Thy Hand was heavy upon me, my vitality was drained away as with the fever heart of summer.  I acknowledged my sin to Thee, and my iniquity I did not hide; I said, ‘I will confess my transgressions to the Lord’; and Thou didst forgive the guilt of my sin” (Psalm 32:3-5).


Do you really believe that He is bigger than your sin? His whole purpose for coming was to take away sins. Do you believe that applies to you? 


Are you living like it? 


Believe His promise and let Him pull the plug on the jaw crusher of sin in your life. I’m praying you through.