Lord, you’re piercing and crushing me, forcing me to ponder difficult questions, touching areas that are uncomfortable. I’m tempted to ask you to stop but I know that you know best. Please don’t remove your refining fire, but help me endure the discomfort.
Do I consider myself a born citizen of your kingdom or am I attempting to maintain a dual citizenship?
Am I willing to walk away from everything, including my family, if you call me to the other end of the earth, to a country not “my own,” leaving the comforts and familiarity of my home and community? This very statement forces me to realize I’m still clinging to dual citizenship and perhaps don’t see myself as a fully approved, documented citizen of your kingdom. Am I merely operating on a visa? Oh God forgive me.
People may say, “He’d never call you away from your family.” No? Abraham and Lot? Peter? The Apostles? (Luke 14:26 “If anyone comes to me and does not hate his own father and mother and wife and children and brothers and sisters, yes, and even his own life, he cannot be my disciple.”) 😮
Am I willing?
Am I truly willing to forego my preferences and opinions and what I think is true to see others, even my enemies, as more important than I?
Am I willing to consider that what I thought was true may not be?
Am I truly willing to hear when people say I’ve offended them or I’m wrong? Am I willing to address it? Am I willing to repent? Do I truly desire reconciliation? Oh God help me!
Am I truly willing to lay my life down for others?
Am I truly willing to silently stand by in the midst of persecution, praying for my persecutor, instead of retaliating or defending myself? The war within my soul is raging Lord! Help me!
Can I see myself living in a completely different geographic location among an unknown people to me, under a governmental system foreign to all I’ve ever known, foreign to civil freedom? Will I still search you out in those circumstances? Will I still exalt you and proclaim your eternal Gospel in that environment? Will my faith endure and not waiver? Will I still pray and intercede when I’m the only one in the midst of persecution, when my brothers and sister have left me? Oh God, help me! Lord I need you! Father, the crushing is painful, uncomfortable, humiliating...but God, I desire the outcome! Crush me! Refine me. Purify me. Teach me. Lead me.
Here I am Lord...