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The process of refining silver is a rigorous one. When it is mined from the ground, silver is raw and unrefined. If a silversmith were to take unrefined silver and attempt to shape it into a platter, he would find that the finished product would lack the shine and the integrity for which he was aiming, due to the impurities that reside within the silver. The silver would not hold itself together; it would crack under pressure, or fall apart at the critical moment.

To make a silver platter, the silversmith must first refine the silver. He does this by melting the silver over extremely high heat. As the silver boils under the influence of high temperatures, the impurities hidden in the silver separate and rise to the surface, where they can be easily seen and then removed. The refiner keeps a watchful eye over the whole process, and will not take his eyes off the molten silver, even for a second. He knows the silver is ready when he can see his own face reflected in its purified surface, and that is the moment he knows to remove the silver from the heat, lest it be destroyed. Now, he can use the silver to craft and fashion a platter, or jewelry, or a cup or anything else he desires to create.

Malachi 3:3 says, “He will sit as a refiner and purifier of silver.” Have you ever wondered why God allows certain things to happen to us? Have you ever asked the question, “why me?” During these times I typically question God’s goodness, His character, and His motives or intent toward me. Allowing my emotions to get the better of me, I question God’s purposes for me because I don’t understand the process I am going through—a refining process that will get rid of the impurities in my life and render me pure and useful in His hands.

While going through the process of refinement, the silver has a task to complete: it must submit to the refining process. Silver that spills out of the cauldron might escape the heat of refinement for the moment, but will inevitably pick up more impurities from having landed where it was not supposed to be.

My task during the refining process is to submit.  I have found that removing myself from the heat of refining will only land me where I don’t wish to be, and will ensure that I have to be put through the process again at a later date. Refining is rarely pleasant. Refining is painful. Refining often lasts longer than I think I can bear. God is ever watchful, though, and the moment He see’s Himself reflected in me in spite of the heat, He will remove me. Then He can craft and fashion me into the vessel He purposed me to be from the beginning.

Question: How is God refining you in this current season? Are you submitting to His process, or are you attempting to “spill” out of the cauldron? How you might partner with Him, instead of fighting against the process? The Refiner has a beautifully unique and ornate purpose for your life—allow Him the good pleasure of creating it in you!


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Julie Appleyard has been involved in Christian Leadership across the world for over 20 years that has included two church plants, as well as turning a small church around to be a community impacting church. While still remaining co-founding Pastor of Crossroads Church just outside of Charlotte North Carolina, Julie, along with her husband Mark, now also serve as founders of Anothen–a Senior Executive Consulting network. Anothen has been activated to fine tune Kingdom business leaders to think, speak and live from heaven’s perspective–to help them become the most influential spiritual leaders in the world. Anothen is gaining amazing momentum, and in just seven months has gone from inception to being active daily in seven US states as well as eight nations. With three kids aged 21, 19 and 17 Mark and Julie Appleyard have dedicated their lives to bringing a nations inheritance to King Jesus by activating Kingdom people to Think, Speak, Live like heaven!

1 Comment

  1. Patrick on June 21, 2017 at 4:04 pm

    The analogy of purifying silver until He sees us as ready is a great one for ourselves to be challenged to submit to Him and allow the impurities to be removed under His instructions, requires our total trust in Him.

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