The Special of the Day… From the Orange Moon Cafe...
"The Opportunity of the Fires"
With the fires of life come many opportunities. We learn, we become stronger, we are prepared to bless others who experience challenges, and we find many other possibilities whereby we see that "the Light shineth in darkness" (John 1:5). One, however, may glimmer more brightly than them all...
"Glorify ye the Lord in the fires" (Isaiah 24:15).
From the most minor irritation to heartrending calamities, born again believers in the Lord Jesus Christ can face our challenges in a manner that honors our Savior and reflects His glorious and involved presence in our lives. Indeed, in this very moment, a Christian somewhere lies on a bed of stillness and pain that has become an altar of faith, praise, and thanksgiving. Another believer sits in a prison because she would not deny her Lord when offered freedom for doing so. Still another child of God looks up to Heaven through tears to express faith in his Father in an hour of great loss and sorrow. On and on, the chronicle of glory proceeds as the sons and daughters of God behold in fiery furnaces the same One who met Hannaniah, Mishael, and Azaraiah in flames that illuminated rather than incinerated.
"And these three men, Shadrach, Meshach, and Abed-nego, fell down bound into the midst of the burning fiery furnace. Then Nebuchadnezzar the king was astonied, and rose up in haste, and spake, and said unto his counselors, Did not we cast three men bound into the midst of the fire? They answered and said unto the king, True, O king. He answered and said, Lo, I see four men loose, walking in the midst of the fire, and they have no hurt; and the form of the fourth is like the Son of God" (Daniel 3:23-25).
With trouble - whatever the measure or the mode - comes the promise of grace to enable our capacity to "glorify ye the Lord in fires." Our faith began this way, on a cruel cross where the Lord Jesus Christ suffered the flames of human rejection, and even more, of Divine wrath. How He honored His Father as He obediently suffered and died for our sins. His Spirit now lives within us to empower the same response whereby the fires serve not to destroy, but to reveal our Father's "very present help in trouble" (Psalm 46:1). Our furnaces are not easy, and seeing the Lord walking therein may challenge our understanding and sensibilities. Through Christ, we can nevertheless raise our hearts to see, to trust, and to respond in a manner whereby we find the opportunity of the fires to greatly glorify our Lord....
"Call upon Me in the day of trouble: I will deliver thee, and thou shalt glorify Me."
"Of Thine own have we given Thee."
(I Chronicles 29:14)