Go For The Gold

Even today my complaint is bitter; His hand is heavy in spite of my groaning. If only I knew where to find Him; if only I could go to His dwelling! I would state my case before Him and fill my mouth with arguments.  . . . But if I go to the east, He is not there; if I go to the west, I do not find Him. When He is at work in the north, I do not see Him; when He turns to the south, I catch no glimpse of Him.
But He knows the way that I take; when He has tested me, I will come forth as gold. 
Job 23:2-10

Job went through unimaginable difficulties. He desperately needed the assurance of God's presence with him, but his search seemed to be futile. He could catch no glimpse of God.
But, somehow, Job had an inner conviction that God knew exactly what was going on in his life. He knew that God was testing him and that after the test, he would come forth as gold. Job went for the gold.

Gold is more valuable only after it has been "tested" or refined through the process of purification. The process is very intense. It involves extreme heat that purges every form of impurity from the gold. The result is pure unadulterated gold. Tested gold is precious metal. It is extremely valuable. The uses are endless.

The Bible tells us that: "In a wealthy home some utensils are made of gold and silver, and some are made of wood and clay. The expensive utensils are used for special occasions . . .  If you keep yourself pure, you will be a special utensil for honorable use.  (2 Timothy 2:20-21 NLT).

To be vessels of gold means we must be willing to submit to the intense purification process. This means, like Job, God might be "nowhere to be seen" when we are engulfed by the intense heat of purification. God will silently purge us with His refiner's fire. The refiner's fire might take all kinds of forms: a hostile work environment; challenges in marriage and family relationships; financial difficulties; prolonged unemployment; health issues; disappointments; attacks from people and betrayals. That is all part of forming a character of gold and strength of steel.
The key thing is to focus on the final product: pure and valuable gold set apart to bring honor to God. Go for the gold. The process is intense and painful, but the result is priceless.

Prayer: Lord, I desire to come forth as gold. Please give me the strength to endure the purification process. Help me to focus on the product and not the process. Amen.