We submit to it by faith-- not knowing the outcome, experiencing the emotional turmoil,
and facing uncertain response from those who watch.
Refined leadership becomes reality as we submit to the fire of God’s grace, bringing not only positional change in our relationship with the Father, but "walking-talking" change in our ministry and leadership. However, most leaders are busy with the business of business or the business of ministry. We seldom take deliberate time to walk through this fire of refining. We choose to ignore things that hinder and entangle our leadership.
We all have a measure of true soul refinement, but in areas of our heart yet to be changed, we present an image that only APPEARS refined. It is the image for public consumption. The impurities, coarseness and extraneous matter resident in the heart may only be revealed at home, in private, or in the darkness. In those areas of the heart we have resisted His fire. Scripture says do not put out the Spirit’s fire! (1Thess. 5:19)
But God is faithful! Hallelujah!! He extends great mercy and grace even as we resist the refining fire. He allows us to harvest in trials and troubles that come to us, not from Him but from our sowing. He allows the harvest but never leaves us or forsakes us. It is often in these difficult times that leaders come face to face with their hearts. We face the consequences of the unrefined heart. 1 Peter 1:7 says ‘these things (trials) have come so that your faith-- of greater worth than gold, which perishes even though refined by fire-- may be proved genuine and may result in praise, glory and honor when Jesus Christ is revealed.'
In tough times we have a door of opportunity to submit to the refining fire. We submit to it by faith-- not knowing the outcome, experiencing the emotional turmoil, and facing uncertain response from those who watch. But it is only as we walk through this door of opportunity that genuine, substantive refinement of the soul takes place. We choose the refining fire of the Spirit and we fix our eyes on Jesus the author and finisher of our faith (Heb. 12:2). He is faithful to bring us through to the other side where there is praise, glory and honor! Jesus will not only be revealed in eternity, but here and now as He is revealed through us!