Better Over Bitter

Read: Ezekiel 36-37

One metaphor that is used often in the Bible is that of refining metals or burning off dross.  That is one of the oldest methods of removing impurities from certain metals. Even in ancient times people would sit next to a hot fire so as to skim the dross or impurities as they would rise to the top. The Bible uses this example in relationship to our life and our relationship with God. In Ezekiel 36:25 the prophet says, “I will cleanse your from all your impurities…”

Often it is in difficult times that God refines us, restores us, and renews us.  We can either let those difficult times make us bitter about what we are going through and what we are experiencing, or we can pray about how God can make us better by going through them.  What can we learn from this current pandemic that we are living through? How can we grow closer in our relationship with Christ and our depending on him? What impurities may need to be removed during this season?  What might we need to repent of?

In Ezekiel 36-37 the prophet talks about restoration.  Chapter 36 moves from verses about cleansing to chapter 37 which speaks of dry bones coming to life.  Right now we may feel like we are in a time of extraordinary change and challenge. Nothing is as it was even several months ago.  Life is different, life is changed, but there is light at the end of the tunnel.  

The question is what are we going to be like when we reach the end of this tunnel?  Will we become better because of what we have been through or will we become bitter because of what we had to go through?  Hopefully there will be proof of our faith in God and surely the Lord will help us to become better followers of our Lord Jesus Christ.  The apostle Paul is a great example for us in this. Through all his trials and afflictions in the New Testament he pressed on and allowed those trials to make him a better person and servant of Jesus.  He chose better over bitter. 

Make it Personal:  I’ll be the first to admit that this season of life has been a challenge.  No church gatherings, no school, no family get togethers, no sports or concerts, the list could go on.  But in the midst of our frustrations we must use this time to better ourselves and develop a closer walk with God.  You will get to that light at the end of the tunnel and the Lord will renew your spirit.

Have a blessed and safe week,  Pastor Glen Rhodes