In the previous post, we discussed the importance of fiery trials and how they are ways that God (the Chef) uses to cook the raw and fresh parts of our lives. And again, the trials and troubles we’re discussing here are not the ones we experience as a result of our wrongdoing. We’re discussing the trials and struggles we face because of our pursuit to live a life of faith that glorifies and pleases God. If you haven’t already, please go ahead and read part one of this series (http://www.royaltywalk.com/testimony/the-fire-the-chef-part-one/) to get more of an understanding of what we’ll be talking about in this blog.
The purpose of the fire…
Can you imagine a world without fire? Have you ever thought about the importance of fire for human survival? Especially when it comes to cooking? Can you see yourself eating raw vegetables, raw fish, raw meat, raw egg…raw everything your whole life? I can’t. It sounds so cold and tasteless. Trials are as important to believers as fire is to our day to day life as humans.
As cold and tasteless raw food is without fire, so is a life of a believer without trials.
In the process of cooking, when the heat of the fire hits the raw materials in a pot; the FLAVOUR, the OIL, and the AROMA hidden within the ingredients begin to be released into the atmosphere. Similarly, when God cooks us through trials, the fire triggers the hidden potential within us and the anointing over our lives. The beauty and the flavour of who we were created to be as unique individuals begin to come out. Our Christ-like character develops and becomes more evident as God matures us in the fire and seasons us into the people He envisioned us to become. Just like how passers-by are often drawn by the AROMA of food being cooked and praise the chef, the aroma that’s released from US being cooked attracts people to GOD. It draws people to Him and brings Him praise and glory.
During cooking, the fire not only brings out the hidden flavour and aroma of the raw materials but it kills every harmful bacterium that could possibly cause food poisoning in the person being served. In the same manner, trials destroy our harmful character traits, behaviours, habits, and everything we carried on from our old dead self. It brings to light and gives God the opportunity to work on and kill the hidden but dangerous traits in our lives that we have become accustomed to ignoring. It kills everything that does not resemble Christ to prevent poisoning those around us with our fleshly characters. People catch all kinds of worms, diseases, life-threatening and lifelong sicknesses when they continuously eat raw food. Same way, if we remain uncooked for one reason or the other, our uncooked, immature character and lack of development, not only does it not glorify God, but it could even possibly push people away from God and the gospel.
Trials don’t just bring out our Christ-like flavour and kill off our poisonous fleshly characters. The STATE and STRENGTH of everything that is raw about us including our faith, confidence, and trust in God is also built and toughened up through trials. Enduring the fire causes us to see the faithfulness of our Chef and so our confidence and trust in Him is strengthened. We start learning to fully and completely rely on God. We become fearless to grab hold of the promises of God for our lives.
We start to live with the boldness, the confidence and the power we’re called to live in Christ Jesus because we have experienced the hand of God.
Trials test our faith in our Chef and the testing is intended to grow our endurance (James 1:3). Endurance is what gives God the opportunity to work on us and build in us a godly character. Trials are our only opportunity to develop our endurance and the full development of our endurance will complete us, needing nothing (James 1:4). So, we must endure and allow endurance to have its full work in us so we don’t stunt our spiritual growth. We must allow ourselves to fully develop through trials to prepare for whatever is awaiting us in the following seasons of our lives.
The problem with many of us is that we make trials all about us. We forget that the trials Christ went through on earth were ALL ABOUT US. This makes the trials that we go through ALL ABOUT HIM. When we make the fire about us, we struggle to endure the cooking process because we are so focused on the heat we’re feeling and the pressure that we’re under; we start trying to jump out of the pot…jumping out of our trying seasons…jumping out of our hardship; not staying still and refusing to COMPLETE the process. Trying to escape, burying our head in the sand, distracting ourselves and rejecting the lessons we’re supposed to take from these trying seasons puts us in a cycle of living the same season over and over again. We should not allow ourselves to stay longer than we are supposed to stay in a certain trial. Don’t be stuck trying to overcome the same thing over and over again. Endure the growth-pain of the trial of course, but ask the Lord what you’re supposed to learn from that specific trying season. Learn whatever it is you must learn quickly and move on. Don’t try and run away. Be OPEN for the Lord to work on you. The trials and struggles and the pressure are a means for God to build in you a godly character that is pleasing to him; cleansing your life from what it needs to be cleansed from; building your confidence and trust in Him. All this is so you can become a useful instrument for the Lord.
We NEED to be cooked not only to taste good but to be USED by God to minister His love to the lost.
Isn’t that our entire purpose here on earth – to worship God and to share the gospel to the lost? But we can’t share a gospel we don’t live. We can’t share a gospel we refuse to suffer and be tried for. If we are to share in the glory of Christ, we ought to share in His sufferings, hardships, trials, and tests here on earth (Romans 8:17) and ENDURE THEM. We ought to endure so that our Christ-like fragrance doesn’t become stifled up and contained but it spreads and reaches those around us. Only then will people start noticing what God is doing in our lives and see what He’s building in us. Only then, will people (unbelievers) begin to notice and be attracted to God by the aroma of Christ that is being released out of our lives. People will begin to enquire about the Chef (Creator) of the masterpiece (Ephesians 2:10). They begin to praise His work. He receives all the praise for the transformation the trials are bringing in our lives. Not only that, but our lives will become testimonies of the love, goodness, grace, favour and faithfulness of God. He gets the glory and honour and people are won over to His kingdom.
Do you want to be used by God? If yes, then surrender yourself to be seasoned and cooked by Him. Allow him to work on you. Be open to learn and change. And always remember, unlike human chefs, God remains with us through the fire. He doesn’t abandon us. So, we should not allow ourselves to be overcome by the trials Christ overcame for us (John 16:33). Let us embrace the trials in our lives and let God do His work in us through them!
“So be truly glad. There is wonderful joy ahead, even though you have to endure many trials for a little while” – 1 Peter 1:6.
God Loves You, Always & Forever!1