Read Proverbs 17
“Tis the Season” is a phrase we hear a lot around Christmas time. Many people say it in reference to being jolly, as if there is an unwritten law about having to be particularly jovial during the holidays. I, being the dark storm cloud I am, tend to say this phrase to mean a number of other things.
Tis the Season for gaining weight.
Tis the Season for getting sick.
Tis the Season for overspending.
Tis the Season for engagements.
During the holidays this year, I gained at least 5 pounds, got sick 3 times in 3 months, spent far more than I had budgeted, and know of at least 4 people who got engaged. I learned quite a bit this year during the season of engagements. Once a girl gets engaged, her friends immediately want to see the ring and seeing a picture on social media just isn’t enough. These rings are beautiful and intricate, they aren’t thrown together willy-nilly. From selecting the materials to fitting it together, great care is taken to ensure that each engagement ring is beautiful.
As silver in a crucible and gold in a pan,
so our lives are assayed by God.
assay: v. to determine the content or quality of (a metal or ore); to examine (something) in order to assess its nature.
Can you picture this with me for a moment? When God looks at our lives, he sees value in them. He finds our lives to be precious! And as we journey along with him, he’s consistently testing the quality of our lives. During a trial, he goes in for another reading: what’s their faith level? How’s their humility doing? Are they willing to give or serve or pray for others in their time of need? He’s consistently checking our lives to see how we’re growing and becoming more like him.
I know how great this makes you feel, even though you have to put up with every kind of aggravation in the meantime. Pure gold put in the fire comes out of it proved pure; genuine faith put through this suffering comes out proved genuine. When Jesus wraps this all up, it’s your faith, not your gold, that God will have on display as evidence of his victory.
Imagine that! The Bible says that the streets in Heaven are paved with gold, beautiful gems will be all around us, we’ll have the splendor of seeing Jesus face to face, and yet, God is concerned about our faith. In the presence of many amazing things, God wants to put our faith on display. That’s far more important than the other things we can offer him.
You may be going through a hard time right now, you might feel like you can’t catch a break or that God has abandoned you. If you feel that way, I want to tell you 1. I’ve been in those seasons and you will overcome this, and 2. He’s right there with you. God hasn’t forgotten you in your dark time, but he is with you as you weather this storm. He’s watching you as your wrestle with your faith in him. He’s studying how you react to what’s going on around you, but he’s not a passive observer, he’s right there next to you, cheering you on and encouraging you to continue moving forward. He loves you immensely and is pleased when you seek his face, so let’s be intentional to do that today.