I’m still touched about the story of the silversmith (my last blog post). In hindsight, when you look back at a difficult situation you’ve been through (a fire experience), it all makes sense. You clearly see the goal God intended for you. But going through it - that’s another story!
When I think of living in the midst of a “fire“, it occurs to me how difficult it really is to see the hand of God in the situation. Yes, we know He’s watching us, He’s helping us, but it doesn’t always FEEL that way. I know He’s always perfecting us, but sometimes I just don’t FEEL like any more perfection! That’s where we get in trouble. We allow our feelings to be our guide. They often cloud our focus on God.
It’s hard not to, especially for us women who are emotionally driven. Those darn emotions tend to get in the way of everything! I sometimes envy my husband. Life seems so simple and uncomplicated to him. He makes a decision and that’s it. Not me. I’m going to think about it and pray about it and think about it some more, then probably think about it again a month later, wondering if I’d made the right decision.
It’s the emotions that complicate the decision making process for me. On top of that are these hormones that are constantly tap-dancing on my brain. So how do we control these emotions when we are in the midst of a fire and feel like God is thousands of miles away?
We go to God’s word. It is chocked full of stories of people like you and me trying to live life like you and me. (I sometimes think their lives were much easier. Have you ever noticed how we have all these amazing time-saving devices, but yet we seem to have less time?)
I think about Peter getting out of the boat during the storm to walk to Jesus. There was Jesus standing right before him with outstretched arms. I would like to think I’d have run to his open arms with no thought about the water. But what does Peter do? He focuses on the stormy waters and begins to sink. Jesus has to pull him up and remind Peter that He is there and everything will be okay.
That’s what we need to do when we are going through the fire or storms in our life - stay focused on Jesus. Don’t look at the storm. Spend more time in His word. Spend more time in prayer. Spend more time with Him. Stop thinking about your feelings.
We need to be convicted of our relationship with God, regardless of the circumstances we may experience. Unfortunately, we often get stuck in the storm or fire because we haven’t spent enough time with Him, causing our lives to become chaotic as we live in our feelings, often lengthening the process.
It’s the same with our marriage relationship. No matter what, we need to stay convicted. Feelings may come and feelings may go, but we can’t base our choices on a fleeting emotion that often leads us astray. Make the decision that you will stand your ground, stay in the fire, walk in the storm for the sake of your marriage. No matter what you may feel, you will not abandon the person you married. (If there is abuse involved, though, staying is not always the best option.)
You need to make that decision BEFORE the fire gets hot so you won’t second guess yourself in the middle of it. That is God’s desire for your marriage and He WILL bless you for persevering. He has some amazing plans for your marriage that involve purifying your soul to make you the person He needs to fulfill those plans. Don’t take the chance of missing out on the best thing God might ever do for you!