Several months ago, my former Pastor, Dr. Rick Miller, sent out his monthly prayer letter from Okinawa Japan. Tears filled my eyes as I read the words penned from a man whose heart is closest to the Lord than of any other man that I know. He had struck a chord with me because I feel that I’m going through some of the same challenges that he is; being “molded” by our Lord. I changed some of the phrasings to personalize it to my life; however, I wanted to give credit to Dr. Miller for this devotion.
Tucked away on a half-page of a Baptist Hymnal is a single-stanza chorus. This hymn was penned in 1926 by Daniel Iverson after hearing a sermon on the Holy Spirit at an evangelistic rally in Orlando, Florida. The brief, yet profound lyric has an ocean of meaning in a drop of speech. “Spirit of the living God, fall fresh on me; Spirit of the living God, fall fresh on me. Break me, melt me, mold me, fill me. Spirit of the living God, fall fresh on me.”
Why do my lips sing, “Break me, melt me, mold me, fill me” yet my selfish heart cries, “Bless me, extol me, affirm me, approve me, provide for me?” Could it be that I tend to forget one of Scriptures truest principles? God develops the fruit of the Holy Spirit in my life by allowing me to experience circumstances in which I am tempted to express the exact opposite quality. God wants to teach me biblical love by putting unlovely people around me. God’s classroom for teaching me genuine joy is the place of sorrow. It is in the midst of chaos and confusion that I discover real peace. God’s method of character development is to “break me, melt me, mold me…” “Mold” me. The dictionary defines the verb “mold” as “to form, shape, fashion, model an object with a particular shape.” God’s plan and purpose for my life is Christlikeness (Romans 8:29); so the Divine Potter kneads and pounds and pushes and pulls and hammers until the stubborn clay is pliable and ready to be fashioned, shaped, formed, “molded” into His vessel of pleasure. It is the process of becoming flexible, bendable and malleable, that is so painful and yet so necessary. “Mold me, Lord.”
Charles Spurgeon looked back at his time on the Potter’s wheel and said, “I bear willing witness that I owe more to the fire, and the hammer, and the file, than to anything else in my Lord’s workshop. I sometimes question whether I have ever learned anything except through the rod. When my schoolroom is darkened, I see most.”
For me, the past couple of years, although filled with His undeniable blessing, has been one of the most breaking and melting seasons of my lives. Life on the Potter’s wheel isn’t fun or enjoyable. I have never questioned His guidance and I know that I am here for such a time as this. His tools have been sickness, surgery, adversity, pain, death, struggles, loneliness, stress, and of all things, mold. Yes, mold – a furry growth of minute fungal hyphae occurring typically in moist conditions. The furry growth had blackened the ceiling of our son’s bathroom leaving me with a mess to clean up. Did I really pray, “Lord, mold me?”
And just when I think the Potter has concluding His work, He thrusts me into the entrance of the flaming kiln. Maybe the words by Kristine Wyrtzen will encourage you like they have me. “The Fire – I’ve been through a fire that has deepened my desire, to know the living God more and more. It hasn’t been much fun, but the work that it has done in my life has been worth the hurt. You see sometimes we need the hard times to bring us to our knees otherwise we do as we please and never heed Him. For He always knows what’s best and it’s when we are distressed that we really come to know God as He is.”
The words of Andrew Murray have become a constant anchor on my stormy sea. “God brought me here. It is by His will that I am in this difficult place – in that I will rest. God will keep me here in His love and give me grace in this trial to behave as His child. God will make the trial a blessing, teaching me the lessons He intends me to learn and working in me the grace He means to bestow. In His good time, God can bring me out again – how and when only He knows. So, I am here by His appointment; in His keeping; under His training; for His time.”
Guest blog submitted by Mickeal Broom with much thanks to both Mickeal and his Pastor.