Revealed By Fire

I sat on the back porch steps with a piece of paper in one hand and a grill lighter in the other. On that piece of paper was written all the wood, hay and stubble lies that I have created for myself.

My list included:
I am tired.
I am sore.
I am frustrated.
I am bitter.
I don't understand.
I can't do it.
I won't ever be different.

Now if any man build upon this foundation gold, silver, precious stones, wood, hay, stubble; Every man's work shall be made manifest: for the day shall declare it, because it shall be revealed by fire; and the fire shall try every man's work of what sort it is. 1 Corinthians 3:12-13

The lies that were written on that paper have been written on my heart for a very long time, and the devil has made sure to reiterate them as frequently as possible. He would like nothing more than to lock me up in a circle of depression, lies and bitterness.

And there they were - all those angry, terrible thoughts in black and white, staring at me from that paper. They looked even uglier there than when I saw them in my heart. There's something about words on paper that make lies nastier and the truth more apparent.

So I carefully folded the paper, said a prayer for strength and flipped the lighter on. The bright yellow flame quickly took hold of that single sheet of paper. It began creeping up, turning the written words into a blackened stick. Soon I couldn't hold it any more and I laid it down on the step beside me. In less than 30 seconds the entire piece of paper was gone, and all that remained was a pile of gray ash.

...because it shall be revealed by fire...

The lies, the anger, the bitterness...they were all revealed in the fire for what they truly were. Ash. They were nothing when put to the test. They don't define me, they don't create who I am and they absolutely don't present the true me. I have done those things myself, and I have allowed Satan to bind my heart and turn it into something I don't like.

But the truth of God's Word prevails again. He has shown me in no uncertain terms how to have victory in my life. The nasty stuff has to go up in flames before I can grow, before I can find peace and before I'll recognize the joy. God has provided a way to purge what is unhealthy and rejoice in His grace.

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