Why Is God Putting Me Through the Fire?

Have you ever used coconut oil?  It's amazing stuff and extremely healthy.  One of the things I find so fascinating about it is the fact that it's solid most of the time. Only above certain temperatures (somewhere around 76 degrees) does it become liquid.  So, in its solid state, it's a bit like butter.  You can spread it on toast or a baked potato.  You can scoop out spoonfuls to top your casserole.  Or, if you're into using healthy cosmetics, you can use the oil as soap, moisturizer or deodorant.  Awesome stuff!

Unfortunately, I haven't been able to deal with coconut oil in its solid state since the temperatures here in upstate South Carolina began to rise a few weeks ago.  It seems that our old air conditioner is not wanting to play nice this year, and until we can get it fixed (or find an alternate solution), the inside temperature isn't much cooler than the outside, which means my coconut oil has remained in a liquid state.  But, you know what?  That's okay because I've discovered many instances where the liquid form works just fine and some occasions where it works even better than it did as a solid.  For example, as a moisturizer, I've found that the liquid allows me to get just the right amount without leaving my skin too oily.  I also discovered that I didn't have to melt the oil first before preparing my little tablets for oil pulling (it's a health thing).  Plus the liquid oil makes an excellent addition to the formula I use to make my all-natural makeup remover wipes.  Yes, I'm finding that the liquid oil has many uses, some of which I would never have thought of when it was in its solid state.

A few weeks ago, though, when I first noticed my soupy oil, I thought, Great!  I can't use my favorite oil. The heat has ruined it and made it unusable.  But what I quickly discovered was that the oil wasn't unusable at all but rather usable in different ways.  As I mentioned earlier, I was able to use the oil for various purposes and even situations in which I had used it before and found that the liquid works better.  Who knew?

God did.  You see, this concept is not new to Him.  He is quite familiar with the process of turning up the heat in our lives.  Not to ruin us.  Not to destroy us.  Not to make us unusable.  But rather to equip us to be used for a different purpose or even to be used better for the same purposes.  Just as silver is tried in the fire to rid it of its impurities, so are we tried to make us the best that we can be.  It isn't a punishment or some cruel cosmic joke.  Once again, God is doing all things for our good, and part of that good is being able to be used in ways that we (and others) never imagined.

Perhaps you're walking through the fire today, wondering if God really cares for you at all.  My friend, He cares.  Otherwise, He wouldn't take the time to make and mold you into what you ought to be.  Don't fight the heat.  Embrace it, knowing that God is preparing you to be used in ways that exceed your imagination.  He has big plans for you if you'll only allow Him to finish His work in you.

For thou, O God, hast proved us: thou hast tried us, as silver is tried. Thou broughtest us into the net; thou laidst affliction upon our loins. Thou hast caused men to ride over our heads; we went through fire and through water: but thou broughtest us out into a wealthy place. - Psalm 66:10-12