May 14, 2020

Formed by Fire

Written by Tripp Prince

Thoughts from daily Bible reading for today – May 14, 2020

Trust in the Lord, and do good; so you will live in the land, and enjoy security. Psalm 37:3

Earlier this week I was talking to a family member about the goodness of trials and challenges. Without dismissing or diminishing the incredible suffering and sorrow of thousands upon thousands in this moment, we chose to receive our present suffering as an invitation to be formed into the likeness of the crucified Christ. We both commented on the fact that an untested life leaves us weak and easily shaken. Character and virtue are formed in the fires of adversity. 

In Tolkien’s imagination, the Shire was surely the safest place anyone could find themselves. If safety and security was all the Lord asked of us, no one would ever leave the peace and tranquility of the Shire. Yet it was in the journey of uncertainty and vulnerability that Bilbo was made brave and courageous, discovered who he was made to be, and then re-entered the Shire and saw it as never before. Similarly for us, the security we long to enjoy is found on the other side of trust in the face of fear and courage when we feel weak and unsure.

“As you therefore have received Christ Jesus the Lord, continue to live your lives in him, rooted and built up in him and established in the faith, just as you were taught, abounding in thanksgiving” (Colossians 2:6-7).

You and I face a moment in which we must courageously continue in the journey of faith, rooting our lives in the love of Christ and believing that he builds us up and makes us who we are meant to be precisely in moments like the one we find ourselves in. Yet how many times over the past few weeks have you and I been tempted to check out of our faith? To stop praying or reading Scripture entirely? Or, are we so consumed by our own vulnerabilities and fears that we are simply unable to do good towards others in need?

Jesus longs to establish you in the faith, like a live oak tree that has withstood centuries of storms blowing in from the sea. And so, wherever you find yourself today, take St. Paul’s words to heart and “continue to live your life in him,” trusting that he who was faithful in the past can transform and steady us in every age and every situation.

“God has said, “Never will I leave you; never will I forsake you.” So we say with confidence, “The Lord is my helper; I will not be afraid. What can mere mortals do to me” (Hebrews 13:5b-6)?

Prayer

Father, help us to see your hand at work in our lives, both in times of peace and in times of great need. We trust in you today and choose thanksgiving and selfless service, even in the face of fear. Amen.


Application

What is one practical way for you to do good today for someone else as a symbolic step towards courage in the face of fear?


Related Reading

Deuteronomy 31:6; Isaiah 41:10; 1 Corinthians 16:13; Hebrews 13:5-6

Here is a helpful resource during these days of grief, sorrow and uncertainty: A Little Book of Comfort


Post/Tweet today

Character and virtue are formed in the fires of adversity. #WisdomHunters #trials #truth #Jesus


Worship Resource

4 minute video- Chris Tomlin: 


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