You must go through the fire
'I have refined you...for my own sake.' Isaiah 48:10,11 NKJV
Undercover Boss is a popular TV show where company owners disguise themselves as regular staff members and work with everybody else. Some of the discoveries they make are real eye-openers - leading to changes that make the company more efficient, profitable and enjoyable for everybody to work in.To 'understand' people, you have to 'stand' in their shoes. Ezekiel said, 'Then I came to the captives at Tel Abib...and I sat where they sat, and...the word of the Lord came to me' (Ezekiel 3:15-16 NKJV). In order to heal the pain, you must be able to feel the pain. The Bible says Jesus can be 'touched with the feelings of our infirmities,' because he walked in our shoes (See Hebrews 4:15). He experienced family conflict, rejection, betrayal, loneliness and hunger. He walked the path you're on and he knows how you feel; that's why you can turn to him when you're in trouble and get the help you need. 'For in that he himself has suffered, being tempted, he is able to aid those who are tempted' (Hebrews 2:18 NKJV). When you offer advice, people want to know if you're speaking out of experience or just head knowledge. So God will permit you to go through experiences you don't enjoy or understand, to equip you and make you effective in ministering to others. Job said, 'When he has tested me, I shall come forth as gold' (Job 23:10 NKJV).If you're in the refiner's fire today, it's because God has something he plans to do through you and for you.
Soulfood: Acts 14-15, Luke 24:50-53, Ps 7:1-9, Prov 11:3-6