“But if I go to the east; He is not there; if I go to the west, I do not find Him. When He is at work in the north, I do not see Him; when He turns to the south, I catch no glimpse of Him. But He knows the way that I take; when He has tested me, I will come forth as gold. My feet have closely followed His steps; I have kept to His way without turning aside. I have not departed from the commands of his lips; I have treasured the words of His mouth more than my daily bread.” Job 23:8-12
As a senior in high school, I was having the time of my life. I was on the varsity soccer team, was editor of the school newspaper, and was looking at colleges to attend. But during the Christmas break, I became tired and fatigued, and eventually learned that I had Acute Lymphoblastic Leukemia. My family was devastated.
After going through about a year of chemo, I went into remission. But less than a year later, the leukemia came back. The only option available now was a bone marrow transplant. not having any matching siblings or donors, they took my own marrow, cleaned it out, and started the transplant process. I had a 20-percent chance of surviving the BMT.
While I was in the hospital in Virginia, 6 hours from home, and with no family around, I be came depressed and lonely. I would pray and pray to God, but I wasn’t sure if He heard. I started to wonder if He even knew what was going on with my condition. Where was God when I needed Him?
Just like Job, I was looking all around for some mighty work or word from God to give me hope. But God had another plan. He did not send trumpets and angels with glorious signs, wonders and miracles but He was doing a far greater work in me. “Know that the testing of your faith develops endurance,” wrote James. And notice that Job is never commended in the Bible for his patience, but his endurance; “Have you not heard of the endurance of Job?”
It was only by testing my faith that he could strengthen my faith. All that was required of me was to stick with God, and not give up on Him. After all, He never gave up on me.
In order to make gold pure, the refiner has to put it through the fire to allow the impurities to rise and be removed. The gold is allowed to cool, then it is placed in the flames to be melted again. This process takes several firings before the gold becomes pure.
How poignant a picture of how God works in us. And the greatest part is, He really does know what we are going through.