New to Refiner’s Fire? I encourage you to read the FORWARD.
Though the terror has a way of striking at any time, any place, “life” doesn’t stop.
1981 was another year of change, including …
A new job — way beyond anything I’d ever done.
Buying a home — from my journal:
- January 22, 1981 “Looking at houses.”
- May 4, 1981 “Bought a home.”
Our son turning 13 (his 13th move with us): He walked into our house, carrying a large box, and kicking the front door shut, leaned back declaring, “I don’t care where the rest of you go, I will never leave this house! (Note: he left before us!)
From my journal: “Father, last night I felt awful (more terror!); Joseph called, needing a ride from Bible Study, at least a one hour round trip. Fearing diarrhea, I didn’t want to go – but I prayed and did pick him up. In fact, by the time I got to the car I was already feeling better. Thank You, Jesus.
Some of the memories which I’ve shared on previous pages have been large. There are also small memories which also show me how God has been continually involved in my life – like the one below.
Our family was asked to be a “poster family” for an Open Doors story. Always a privilege to be used by God – especially when the body is raging. This picture is like looking at a hug from the Triune God. His silent proof that He can use me regardless of how I feel inside.
Another journal entry from 1981 …
Friday night: South Coast Plaza; this was hard.
Saturday: ninety minute round-trip to San Clemente; no problems. Thank You, Lord — I can’t express the depth of my thanks in words. Please continue this relief you’ve given. May I be completely normal so I’m able to serve You without hesitation.
God didn’t answer that prayer as I had hoped. He had His reasons.
I can’t think of the following memory without tears:
This daily experience was when the song Refiner’s Fire became such an integral part of my life. It is the truth in this song that led me to name this Blog Refiner’s Fire. Who/What is the Refiner’s Fire?
Mornings were fearful as I prepared to leave for work. Driving to work, my body raged and my arms burned. Once I got to work, I wasn’t sure I could function. My morning routine looked like this:
- Walk out to car with dread
- Drive to work, listen to Refiner’s Fire.
- Fifteen minutes into my trip, it was like a crescendo within my body as it felt like it was going to explode.
- I cried, “Why, Jesus? Why won’t you take me home? How long will this last? Please Lord.”
- I turned the CD as loud as it would go, clinging to every word, as tears flowed. (I often wondered how I looked when I arrived at the church office.)
Viewing a photo of the overpass below, I wonder how many times I begged God to take me home as I drove over it.
Why didn’t He?
“Each time, His purging cleanses deeper
I’m not sure that I’ll survive”
To this day I’m amazed how God works through my terror.
A friend suggested I write this Blog, saying, “Wanda this may be as much for you as it is for those who need the encouragement. She was right.
CURRENT (January, 2018): since moving to this apartment, in February 2017, over and over I have stood at the elevator while a million little men try to dig their way out of my arms, making me feel like I’m consumed with terror. “Jesus, I can’t do this by myself. Why can’t I just stay in our apartment?” Then the memories written on these pages flood my heart and I KNOW, even though it doesn’t feel like it; Jesus is going to give me the strength – once again.
Your suffering may be physical, mental, emotional, or relational. I urge you not to give up. Beg God, not to take you home, but to give you the desire and strength to keep on keeping on.
“Dear brothers and sisters, when troubles of any kind come your way, consider it an opportunity for great joy. For you know that when your faith is tested, your endurance has a chance to grow. So let it grow, for when your endurance is fully developed, you will be perfect and complete, needing nothing.” (ESV)
Ask God to give you a greater measure of faith.
Next page: Fed Up! Ever Been There?