These 2 stories sum up what I’m feeling right now:
When I first moved to California, I got into 2 car accidents (one happened to be while falling asleep driving home from working the night shift, which I will NEVER work again). I also got strep throat, and my leg got skegged (aka, sliced open) with a surfboard fin which required 13 stitches the day before I started my new job.
I could go on, but you get the idea. And this all happened in the first 2 weeks. But amidst all these “bad” things that kept happening, there were peacocks. Yup. You know, those birds with the beautiful feathers? I saw them everywhere. Billboards, magazines, the mall, on the side of a bus, on the cover of the daily bread devotional, as earrings and jewelry… everywhere. I started noticing so many peacocks that one day I decided to google “peacock”. And here’s what I found: When a peacock looses its feathers, the new ones that grow back far surpass the old ones in beauty and strength.
Wow. Isn’t that amazing? So, if you ever visit our apartment, (which will be gone in just 35 days, ahhh!) you’ll see random peacock designs and picture frames and such to remind me that no matter how painful the process of loosing my feathers is, God is using these bare (pun intended) times to make me stronger. And boy am I looking forward to my pretty new feathers.
We all know the Bible verses that talk about being purified and refined. But have you ever really investigated the process? Check it out:
There was this lady who was intrigued by these verses, so she called a silversmith and made an appointment to watch him at work. She didn’t mention anything about the reason for her interest beyond her curiosity about the process of refining silver. As she watched the silversmith, he held a piece of silver over the fire and let it heat up. He explained that in refining silver, one needed to hold the silver in the middle of the fire where the flames were hottest as to burn away all the impurities. The woman thought about God holding us in a hot spot; then she thought of the verse in Malachi that says”He sits as a refiner and purifier of silver”. She asked the silversmith if it was true that he had to sit there in front of the fire the whole time. The man answered that yes, he not only had to sit there holding the silver, but he had to keep his eyes on the silver the entire time it was in the fire. If the silver was left a moment too long in the flames, it would be destroyed.
The woman was silent for a moment. Then she asked the silversmith, “How do you know when the silver is fully refined?” He smiled at her and answered, “Oh, that’s easy– when I see my image on it”.
And so it seems, that peacock feathers and silver refining are really helping me gain some good perspective right now.
p.s. Don’t forget to vote for our picture in the Hawaii photo contest! If we win, we’ll use the $500 prize towards YWAM! You can vote TEN times per hour!