A beautiful lady appearing on the cooking channel this week made a scrumptious looking orange pudding cake and I thought that looks yummy. I can make that recipe.
So, last evening I gathered the ingredients and combined them, step-by-step. I placed the ramekins in a baking dish and filled the container with water for their thirty minute beauty-bath.
Fifteen minutes into the cooking process I turned around and, holy-moley, hisses of steam gushed out the seams in the oven door, followed by an explosion, and the sound of shattering, breaking glass.
I yanked open the door and gawked at a baking dish in a zillion pieces on the racks, falling into the sizzling water filling the bottom of my oven. A fine layer of glass slivers lay scattered across the top of the partially baked cakes.
Slamming the door shut I reached for the cancel switch, punched it, and stood cemented to the floor. Shocked. Conferring with myself I asked, What happened? What should I do? And answered, Can’t do anything ‘til the temperature cools.
Oh my beautiful cakes. What a waste. What a mess.
I cleaned up the fragments, slivers and pieces of glass after dinner and thought how much worse it could have been. The dish could have held a grits, eggs, and cheese—not just water.
Thank you, Lord.
This morning I described the accident to a friend and she asked, “Did you put hot or cool water in the dish?”
“Why, I put boiling water in the dish. Aren’t you supposed to?”
“Fifteen minutes into the process?” I asked.
I’m so thankful God doesn’t plunge us into boiling water to transform us into what He intends us to become. However, the moment we come to Jesus, confessing, repenting, and trusting Him to save us and wash us clean from the guilt of sin, the water bath of our sanctification begins.
Day by day—moment by moment, God controls the temperature of the conforming process, just like the silversmith purifying silver.
The smith heats the silver warmer and warmer, little by little, skimming the dross as it separates and floats to the top. Always controlling the heat. Not too hot, nor too cold. Watching as the impurities come to the surface, he scoops them out of the pot. Over and over this process is repeated until the silversmith can gaze into the pot and see his reflection in the purified silver.
Just like Jesus does with each one of us.
Does the refining process at times seem unbearable? Oh yes. And the whirlwinds of life tragic? Certainly. But God has promised He will never leave us or forsake us and “God causes all things together for good to those that love God, to those who are called according to His purpose. For whom He foreknew, He also predestined to become conformed to the image of His Son…” (Romans 8:28-29 NAS). And all includes even the bad stuff.
I’m not a quick-study and sometimes I don’t listen or follow directions. As evidenced by the mess in my oven last night. But my Father in Heaven is merciful and patient. Scripture tells me, “The Lord’s lovingkindnesses indeed never cease, for His compassions never fail. They are new every morning; great is Thy faithfulness” (Lamentations 3:22-23 NAS).
He shapes and molds my character everyday, changing me into the image of His Son. But I often don’t learn ‘til He turns up the heat, allowing painful situations to surface, sending me running back to my Savior and Lord—Jesus Christ.
Have explosions of disobedience and rebellion left shattered slivers of sin’s fall-out scattered over your not-done-yet image in the mirror? Please don’t despair, God’s grace, mercy, and love is extended to you this day.
By the confession of your mouth and repentance of your heart, allow the water-bath of His Word and the fire of trials to bring the dross to surface. He gathers the sins of His own people, casting them behind His back—into the depths of the sea. Never to be remembered again.