So I was reading in the book of Daniel the other day and something just really jumped out at me that I thought I'd share with you all.
Daniel 3:17- If it be so, our God whom we serve is able to deliver us from the burning fiery furnace, and he will deliver us out of thine hand, O king.
I'm sure that many of you have heard the story about Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego and the burning furnace. I've heard this story many times and was always amazed by the wonderful courage and faith these three men possessed. As I was reading it recently, I really sat down and thought about the meaning of this verse for the first time.
We all go "through the fire" sometimes in life. Most of us have it pretty good, though. We've never had to choose to die for Christ by being given the choice to either serve him and die or bow down before an idol and live. Many Christians through history and even today have suffered greatly for the cause of Christ. We don't have to suffer like this...but we all still go through trials in life. I'd just like to give three points on how to "Go through the fires in life-knowing God is there with us."
1) Realize that we are not fire-proofWe are not fire-proof. That is for certain. Life just kind of knocks us on our knees sometimes. Just think about it this way-Imagine that you are stuck in the middle of a house that is on fire. All four walls around you are engulfed in flames. There is no way you can escape without burning up, but right in front of you there's a fire-proof uniform. If you put this on you'd be safe from the flames. We can compare this story to life. Supose you've just had a really terrible tragedy in your life. You've been burned-the fire is around you per say and Jesus is standing right beside you. Pleading with you to let him wrap his arms around you and to carry you through the flames. Yet, we rely on our own strength-not fully trusting in his. I think we do this often without even realizing it. God is standing right there telling us to fully trust in him but yet we're often so busy relying on our own strength that we don't realize he's standing, right there waiting for us to turn to him.
2) Realize that God is fire-proof
Matthew 19:26 - But Jesus beheld them, and said unto them, With men this is impossible; but with God all things are possible.
We must realize that God is fire-proof. He can withstand anything and everything. We can't. We really don't have any strength on our own. Without him we are nothing. So often we depend on our selves and not on God. We think that we can do things on our own. Sometimes we might say "Lord I need your help. Could you please help me out here?" That prayer is not incorrect it's just incomplete. We don't just need God's help....he needs to be in full control. So often we are only partly trusting in God. It's like we believe he can help us but we don't believe that complete strength and power comes from him. Let's go back to that illustration I used. Let's say your in the room surrounded by flames and you see the fire-proof uniform. You run to it...but you only put it half on. What's going to happen? Your still going to burn. Maybe not as bad but your still going to burn. Your only half fire-proof. So let's say the uniform represents Christ. You may be trusting him but not completely. It's a split trust-between yourself and God.
3) Realize that we can <fully> trust in his protectionPsalm 118:8 - It is better to trust in the LORD than to put confidence in man.
We can FULLY trust on Christ! Just think about Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego and the outstanding faith they put in Christ! They believed Christ could deliver them from the fire but not only that he could but that he would. They had to go through real flames! I don't think any of us will have to experience that. Our trials are not near what their's were, yet through all of that they're faith never withered in Christ. We must be like that. Our faith and trust must be completely dependent on Christ and not ourselves. We must fully trust in him, He can and he will carry us through the fire. We just got to trust and believe in him.
We are not fire-proof but Christ is. put your COMPLETE trust in him and he will deliver you. And through that you can impact so many others. Look at
Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego- through they're faith they turned the king away from his idols and the whole nation found out about our great God.
Have courage. Put your faith in Him.