We are smiling here but not when we got the news of the fire! Our two cars were burnt to a crisp as the result of a gang coming through causing trouble. This form of protest in France is concerning but we never thought we would be a target! It was surprising but the Lord had a plan in all of it. He graciously replaced our cars with two that were newer with better mileage. And He did this through the gifts of His people! Through this test our faith has grown and become more fireproof!
Today’s verse tells believers not to be surprised at the hard times we suffer. They are not the exception, but the norm. We are not exempt from difficulties, although sometimes we think we should be. The “fiery ordeal” in this verse is not something that is caused by our own wrong choices. It is an ordeal that comes from living as a believer in an unbelieving world.
It is easy for me to think that I should be shielded from hard times. But I am to view any suffering for Him as a privilege and a joy! (verse 13). And the end result of this story is joy at seeing how Jesus used it for His purposes and His glory! Our faith has been strengthened. And the evil intent of this gang was turned around to His praise and glory in our lives. Because of this drama I am less surprised at opposition and more confident that God will use it!
Lord, keep my faith strong in whatever I face.