Inner Truth~The Effective Messenger
Romans 5:3-4 says, “And not only that, but we also glory in tribulations, knowing that tribulation produces perseverance; and perseverance, character; and character hope.” The Amplified says, “…knowing that pressure and affliction and hardship produce patient and unswerving endurance. And endurance (fortitude) develops maturity of character (approved faith and tried integrity)…”
Our faith is tried in the crucible of our trials. Abimelech’s heart was tested when Abraham lied about Sarah. He was able to say this to the Lord in Genesis 20:5, “…In the integrity of my heart and innocence of my hands I have done this.”
Proverbs 11:3 says, “The integrity of the upright will guide them, but the perversity of the unfaithful will destroy them.” Balaam lacked character. He was easily swayed. Numbers 22:32 says, “…Behold, I have come out to stand against you, because your way was perverse before Me.”
Amy Carmichael was a missionary in India. Through a devastating injury she spent the remainder of her life bedridden. Yet the Lord turned what seemed like a tragedy into a crucible ministry. She wrote from her constant pain to others in their pain. Her words came from the fiery trial that purified her faith.
How like the Lord. What satan would design as something to crush our spirit, the Lord turns into a ministry. There are countless effective ministries today birthed in the crucible of a hard trial. Some are global, and some one-on-one.
Luke 22:31-32 says, “And the Lord said, Simon, Simon! Indeed, satan has asked for you, that he may sift you as wheat. But I have prayed for you, that your faith should not fail; and when you have returned to Me, strengthen your brethren.” Peter later wrote the timeless truths of 1 & 2 Peter. Verses today that still minister centuries later.
Amos 9:9 speaks of the Lord’s sifting Israel, saying, “…as grain is sifted in a sieve; yet not the smallest grain shall fall to the ground.” The sieve was a large mesh screen, that when vigorously shaken, removed the undesirable.
The apostle Paul’s suffering was intense. Yet through that, the Lord gave him a ministry that encourages everyone who reads his prison letters. Paul’s character was forged in the crucible of his trials.
Character is that deep abiding quality of behavior that is the same alone or with others. It has been proven in the crucible and refined as silver is refined. Temptations only deepen and reveal the true moral fiber of the heart’s integrity. Integrity is defined as: honor, moral strength, moral fiber, rectitude, uprightness; fortitude, strength, resolve.
Hebrews 4:13 Amplified says, “And not a creature exists that is concealed from His sight, but all things are open and exposed, naked and defenseless to the eyes of Him with Whom we have to do.” It is a glorious truth. We cannot hide. Character thrives in the light.
Psalm 66:10-12 says, “For You, O God, have tested us; You have refined us as silver is refined. You brought us into the net; you laid affliction on our backs. You have caused men to ride over our heads; we went through fire and through water; but You have brought us out to rich fulfillment.” This is a Psalm that could easily have been written by Joseph.
Young Joseph had dreams that foretold his future. His brothers rode over his head. Psalm 105:18-19 is a poignant description of Joseph’s crucible. It says, “They hurt his feet with fetters, he was laid in irons. Until the time that his word came to pass, the word of the Lord tested him.” The Amplified uses the words that his soul entered into the iron. The iron entered into his mind, will, and emotions. The Lord used the wrath of those against him, as the testing fire to prove his character.
Here is a new song called Song of Endurance
In the stillness of the morning I come to seek Your face
To hear Your words of wisdom to know how to run this race
It’s not to the swift to finish the course
It’s to the one who endures and rests in You Lord.
Your promises are true they fortify my faith. I look to You in each trial I face
You’re my Rock in which I stand You’re my shelter in each storm
You faithfully support me and hold my hand
To rest is the key when impossibilities loom
My strength to endure is abiding in Your Word
Your Word is my stability when everything shakes
I remain standing in You. No matter what you’ll not forsake
December 7, 2005
j marilyn adams ~ March 10, 2016