GUIDING MY SON
Recently I was guiding my young adult son through a tough period, a season of struggle. It was hard for either of us to see any good or blessing in this season. As I prayed about the situation, God revealed to me, "there is blessing after the pain." I believe that was something He wanted me to share with my son, which I did. This was of only limited encouragement to him. After all, he was still in the midst of the struggle, or the "forging."
I ran across the concept of forging on a video from a History channel show. (I encourage you to pause and watch the 1-minute video now). Those of us who have been through struggles that result in blessing, realize that God often uses our season of pain to grow us and to prepare us to help others in the future. Another word for this process of growing could be forging. The definition of forging is "to make or shape (a metal object) by heating it in a fire or furnace and beating or hammering it." (1)
A specific kind of forging is called forge welding. According to the video, the definition is as follows:
"As opposed to mig welding, which uses a filler material, forge welding is bonding two metals directly and permanently together on a molecular level, using just heat and pressure. As such, it's considered a higher art than mig welding. It's more difficult, more traditional, more effective. Bladesmiths, when forge welding will often use something called borax, which is a natural occurring mineral and occasional laundry detergent. The borax helps clean the steel in order to aid in the bonding of the metal." (2)
APPLICATION: OUR FATHER'S FORGING AND BLESSING
I told my son, "You are in the heat and you are being shaped. It's 'hot' and 'painful' now, but the blessing will come after the pain.
Does this make everything better right away? No, of course not. But it provides important perspective to our situation. It says above that this process of using heat and pressure to forge weld is "more difficult, more traditional, more effective."
If we have faith that God is using this struggle or pain for good, and if we seek the lesson, growth opportunity, and potential blessing, it changes how we experience it. Sometimes it's not the situation we're in, but how we choose to go through it, that determines the level of our peace. When the season is completed, we may very well see how God taught us something very valuable; the blessing. If we are looking, we may also see how the struggle and the blessing can be used to bless others in a similar circumstance.
ROMANS 8:28 (NIV) And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose.
Are you in a season of struggle? If so, I believe God is forming you, all of us, to be more like Him. More specifically, I think He is forge welding us to Him. This can be done because His Holy Spirit is in those of us who follow Jesus. I believe the borax (cleaning agent) is Jesus and His work on the cross. When we go to God with a repentant heart, we ask forgiveness and surrender things over to Him. This "borax" --cleansing and forgiveness--allows for an easier, better bond to God. And our heavenly Father wants to guide us the way we want to guide our children.
ISAIAH 54: 15-17 (NIV) If anyone does attack you, it will not be my doing; whoever attacks you will surrender to you. “See, it is I who created the blacksmith who fans the coals into flame and forges a weapon fit for its work; and it is I who have created the destroyer to wreak havoc; no weapon forged against you will prevail, and you will refute every tongue that accuses you. This is the heritage of the servants of the Lord, and this is their vindication from me,” declares the Lord.
I encourage you to pray to God for the "borax" and how he may be "forging" you. My prayer for you is that any area of struggle or pain you may be in would lead to abundant blessing in 2017!
-Brian Goslee, Changed Through Faith Ministries
(1) (2) SOURCE: [HISTORY Channel]. (2015, July 24). HISTORY Forged in Fire: Bladesmithing 101: Forge Welding [Video File]. Retrieved from https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XeXAsSj22yo.