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

So far, our refinement process seems to have resulted in just one big mess. In fact, I have found that before seeing any outward progress in my spiritual walk, my life often looks far worse, rather than better. The slurry of our lives is all too obvious; if we do not keep focused on the end result, we despair.

Why can I not be perfect without being pathetic?

In order for gold to near a useable form, it must be pressed through a filtering medium. Our faith too must be pressed, and this takes time. In fact, true value always takes time. Instant maturity is an illusion.

The good news is that, although we may be hard pressed on every side, we will not disintegrate (2 Corinthians 4:8). Disappointments, disillusionment, and failures are both the outer and internal pressure used to complete His work.

We were afflicted on every side: conflicts without, fears within. (2 Corinthians 7:5)

Know that when you are experiencing one or several of these dire events, you are that much closer to being perfect like He is.

We cannot know His comfort without a need to be comforted (2 Corinthians 1:3). Sometimes, when pressed, He will send someone to comfort us (2 Corinthians 7:6). Sometimes we are pressed ahead of time so that we can comfort someone else (2 Corinthians 1:4).

So, here is today, with all its hardships, sufferings, and emotions. If you focus on your situation, it may seem impossible to endure.

However, fast-forward a bit, and the scene is much different. There, just ahead, is an amazing state of being in which all becomes clear. The veil that we currently live underneath is removed; we discover that all along, His brilliant glory has been resident within us.

In reality, we will discover that the hardship does not deserve nearly the amount of emotional energy that we have spent upon it.

What is the secret?

We need to look past the “now” and live as if the glory is already apparent (Romans 8:18).

Take a moment. Focus on the final reality.

Now, ask the Father to keep your thoughts fixed there.

Set your mind on things above…(because, after all) when Christ, Who is our life, is revealed, then you also will be revealed with Him in glory. (Colossians 3:2, 4)

Let’s do this together.


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


The final stage of the refinement process is smelting. It is not just “melting,” because the process is more than heat. Smelting also uses a chemical agent to pull the final oxygen atoms from the raw mineral of the gold.

Spiritual smelting, like its physical counterpart, is an intensive time of weakness.

David was intimately acquainted with the process.

My heart is like wax, it is melted within me. My strength is dried up like a potsherd. (Psalm 22:14)

I wonder what was going on in his life during this period?

In my own life, smelting times have included:

  • phone calls to my mother without her recognizing my voice,
  • hospital rooms filled with the fear of my daughter’s paralysis, and
  • disintegration of a much-prayed-for dream.


There have been times in the smelting that I have wondered if I have any faith left. The words of Job and Jeremiah resonated more deeply in those times than did the words of Peter or Paul:

I cry out to Thee for help, but Thou dost not answer me; I stand up, and Thou dost turn Thy attention against me. Thou hast become cruel to me. (Job 30:20-21)

Even when I cry out and call for help, He shuts out my prayer…My soul has been rejected from peace; I have forgotten happiness. So I say, “My strength has perished, and so has my hope from the LORD.” (Lamentations 3:8, 17-18)

I then remember that even Jesus went through this chemical meltdown:

About the ninth hour Jesus cried out with a loud voice, saying, “ELI, ELI, LAMA SABACHTHANI?” that is, “MY GOD, MY GOD, WHY HAVE YOU FORSAKEN ME?” (Matthew 27:46)

So how do we survive?

  • Pour out our hearts before Him: Trust in Him at all times, ye people; pour out your heart before Him; God is a refuge for us. (Psalm 62:8)
  • Tell Him exactly what we are feeling: I poured out my complaint before Him; I declared my trouble before Him. When my spirit was overwhelmed within me, You knew my path. (Psalm 142:2-3)
  • Force your mind to often remember His past acts of faithfulness: Surely my soul remembers and is bowed down within me. This I recall to my mind, therefore I have hope. The LORD’S lovingkindnesses indeed never cease, for His compassions never fail. They are new every morning; great is Your faithfulness. (Lamentations 3:20-23)
  • Wait for the Lord in silence, without worrying about what to say in prayer: It is good that he waits silently for the salvation of the LORD. It is good for a man that he should bear the yoke in his youth. Let him sit alone and be silent since He has laid it on him. (Lamentations 3:26-28)


Brother Yun, the “heavenly man” known for his persecution in China says, “We shouldn’t pray for a lighter load to carry, but a stronger back to endure! Then the world will see that God is with us, empowering us to live in a way that reflects His love and power.”

May the purity of His life within you be evident as you reflect the hidden value of your inner person.


©2014 Thrive.


Question to consider:  How do you see “the purity of His life within you be evident as you reflect the hidden value of your inner person?”