Oct 25, 2015

Refiner's Fire.

UGH, I am being refined. When you say that something has been refined that means it has been through a process to bring it to a point where it is free from impurities. Why do things need to be refined? Did you know that after something is refined it is supposedly better than it was before?

I was reading about refining today and I learned about how impossible it would be to develop a universal boiler or engine capable of running on all crude oils. So to meet user requirements crude oil has to be separated, converted, and treated in a process called refining. There is lots of refining going on all around us. Sugar is refined. Salt is refined. Food oil is refined. Metals are refined. Petroleum oil is refined. I wonder if sugar wants to be refined? I wonder if it likes the process? I imagine it knows it has to go through it so it just submits willingly. Silly sugar.

What do you think about the idea that as humans we are all being refined? Remember the children of Israel in the Bible? They were definitely refined while they wandered in the wilderness for 40 years learning things about themselves. As humans enduring is what our refining process is. No actual melting. No actual heat. Although sometimes I feel like that is actually happening. But honestly it is just plain, old fashioned, enduring. Just embrace it. It is teaching us patience. It is increasing our perspective. It is making our little hard hearts soft. It even strengthens our conviction. I hear those are all good things....we want them :)

I hate to admit that I need refining and that it is good for me but I can not deny it, it is all true. Every time I come through something hard I notice that I am a teeny tiny bit better than I was before. My edges feel a little bit smoother. I feel a little bit calmer. I understand a little bit better. It is a slow process. Just in case you are jealous that I am always moving forward I have to tell you in all honesty I have been known to go backwards. Sometimes I feel refined, feel like I have learned, and feel a bit of a thrill about it. But then the situation comes up again, I make the same mistake again, and realize with a large amount of despair that I am not as refined as I thought I was and oh, hey I just did that mistake thing.... again. A most frustrating feeling to behave the way you shouldn't.

You would think by the time you were 46 years old that refining might be close to being over but that is not the case for me. Hard things are still happening. Hard things I have no control over. People making choices that affect me but that I have no control over are all around me. Hard things that I just have to endure and remind myself that I have to have faith that it will all work out the way it is supposed to. Submitting.....yeah, that is what it is called....good times.

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