Like gold - Beth Doerksen
I was recently updating my resume and came to the place where I needed to explain my current job. I was stumped. How could I describe everything that I have done and learned since joining the Fellowship last August, in a few bullet points? Where would I find room to list every new, random, and valuable skill I am learning to possess?
It gave me pause as I reflected on how unique and challenging this experience has been. I am not sure that I am the same person that I was seven months ago, and I believe that is a positive thing. It has been a year of adventure and healing, but also a year of wrestling and growth.
Community is a large part of the program, and something that is inevitably part of this, is confrontation. Being a naturally harmonious person, this is something that isn’t easy or comfortable for me. Yet, time after time this year, the Lord has called me into these “opportunities” in order to experience growth. The more I get to practice this, the more I have grown to appreciate and embrace these conversations. I am realizing that I have a God-given boldness inside of me, that He commands me to use in to encourage and push others in their faith.
Awhile back, I was presented with an analogy that has resonated with me deeply. It is the analogy of the Refiners Fire. It was explained to me like this: A refiner is one who removes blemish or impurities from metal, such as gold or silver. They heat the metal until it enters a melted state. As it heats, the impurities rise to the surface and are skimmed off. This process happens multiple times until the Refiner deems the metal as pure. How can they tell this? They can tell by their ability to see their own reflection in the metal.
This is much like what this year has been for me. God has applied a purposeful heat to different areas of my life that house unholy impurities. He has brought them to the surface and has used others to speak truth into them. Does it hurt? Yes. Is it easy? No. Is it worth it? Absolutely. God does not waste pain, and I believe that he is using this process in order for His reflection to become more and more clear in my life. I am being refined by His holy fire with the goal of looking more like Him.
“I will put them into the fire. I will refine them like silver and test them like gold. They will call on my name and I will answer them; I will say, ‘They are my people.’ And they will say, ‘The Lord is our God.’”