“Search me, O God, and know my heart; test me and know my anxious thoughts. See if there is any offensive way in me, and lead me in the way everlasting.” Psalm 139:23-24
At age 58 I have to confess that I thought certain sin issues I fought in my younger years had been conquered. I assumed that God’s work of transformation was complete in those areas. I’ve been chagrined to find that in actuality opportunity for those particular sin areas had simply diminished and when opportunity returned sin abounds.
I am acutely aware of the work of God in convicting me of pride and complacency in my desire for complete transformation and holiness. Being dropped into the furnace of affliction has quickly surfaced the dross in my life. Worry, impatience, self pity – so much has surfaced at times that I feel like I don’t know me anymore. I’ve sometimes even reverted to age ten as I interact with a very ten year old granddaughter. Instead of maintaining the adult self-controlled posture in our exchanges I engage in her tactics. Ugh!
How thankful I am that I’m not in this alone. I’m also very aware of the Holy Spirit sitting beside me as a refiner of silver. In fact the raw awareness of sin in my life is a gift from the Spirit. I’m learning to maintain a constant dialogue with the Holy Spirit asking for help and insight into my own heart and the hearts of those I love and with whom I interact. There is a new measure of thanksgiving for this trial that is revealing the truth of my heart condition and giving me opportunity to invite and receive the transforming work of the Holy Spirit in me.
“See, I have refined you, though not as silver; I have tested you in the furnace of affliction.” Isaiah 48:10