Category: Trials

You are chosen in the furnace of affliction!

George Whittenby George Whitten

Isaiah 48:10 Behold, I have refined you, but not as silver; I have tested you in the furnace of affliction.

The great evangelist and teacher Charles Spurgeon had a plaque on his bedroom with the words written on it, “I have chosen thee in the furnace of affliction.

Spurgeon, writing about the trials and afflictions that the saints endure, said, “It is no mean thing to be chosen of God.” He continued, “God’s choice makes chosen men choice men … we are chosen, not in the palace, but in the furnace. In the furnace, beauty is marred, fashion is destroyed, strength is melted, glory is consumed; yet here eternal love reveals its secrets, and declares its choice.

In the midst of trials and tribulations comes the burning question: “Why do the righteous suffer?” Some answer with theology, others with platitudes; C.S. Lewis offers a rhetorical, “Why not? They’re the only ones who can take it!

One friend suggests, “Suffering was the personal choice of God at the beginning of creation. [Revelation 13:8] If I want to know Him personally and intimately how can I not embrace it?

Embrace your trial and the suffering involved, but only if you want a deeper relationship with your personal savior.

Your family in the Lord with much agape love

by George Whitten

A cross of their own choosing

Thomas Watsonby Thomas Watson

“The Art of Divine Contentment”

“I have learned to be content whatever the circumstances. I know both how to have a little, and I know how to have a lot. In any and all circumstances I have learned the secret of being content–whether well-fed or hungry, whether in abundance or in need.” Philippians 4:11-12

Paul knew how to manage in every state–he learned to be content whatever his circumstances. If he was in prosperity, he knew how to be thankful. If he was in adversity, he knew how to be patient. He was neither lifted up with prosperity–nor cast down with adversity.

A Christian should be content in any and every situation. Many are contented in some conditions–but not in every condition. They can be content in a wealthy state. When they have the streams of milk and honey–now they are content. But if the wind turns and is against them–now they are discontented. While they have a silver crutch to lean upon–they are contented; but if God breaks this crutch–now they are discontented.

Many would be content with their affliction–if God would allow them to pick and choose. They could better endure sickness–than poverty; or bear loss of estate–than loss of children. If they might have a cross of their own choosing, they would be content.

But a contented Christian does not desire to choose his cross–but leaves God to choose for him. He is content both for the kind of the afflictions, and the duration of the afflictions, which God gives him. A contented man says, “Let God apply whatever medicine He pleases, and let it lie on as long as He desires. I know when it has done its cure, and eaten the venom of sin out of my heart–that God will take it away.

A contented Christian, being sweetly captivated under the authority of the Word, desires to be wholly at God’s disposal, and cheerfully lives in whatever circumstances that God has placed him in. “I delight in weaknesses, in insults, in hardships, in persecutions, in difficulties.” (2 Corinthians 12:10) He does not only submit to God’s dealings, but rejoices in them!

by Thomas Watson