I really enjoy reading Max Lucado. I love his insight and appreciate his ability to take what seems to me so hard to express and put it in such beautiful picturesque words. I received this in my email this week and thought it was worth sharing with you. I know some of you, like me, are feeling a little (or alot) like you're on the anvil right now. Take heart...God will use this time for His glory and to strengthen you for His kingdom.
According to www.dictionary.com, the first definition of anvil is:
a heavy iron block with a smooth face,
frequently of steel,
on which metals, usually heated until soft,
are hammered into desired shapes
by Max Lucado
On God’s anvil. Perhaps you’ve been there.
Melted down. Formless. Undone. Placed on the anvil for…reshaping? (A few rough edges too many.) Discipline? (A good father disciplines.) Testing? (Buy why so hard?)
I know. I’ve been on it. It’s rough. It’s a spiritual slump, a famine. The fire goes out. Although the fire may flame for a moment, it soon disappears. We drift downward. Downward into the foggy valley of question, the misty lowland of discouragement. Motivation wanes. Desire is distant. Responsibilities are depressing.
Passion? It slips out the door.
Enthusiasm? Are you kidding?
It can be caused by a death, a breakup, going broke, going prayerless. The light switch is flipped off and the room darkens. “All the thoughtful words of help and hope have all been nicely said. But I’m still hurting, wondering…..”
On the anvil.
Brought face to face with God out of the utter realization that we have nowhere else to go. Jesus in the garden. Peter with a tear-streaked face. David after Bathsheba. Elijah and the “still, small voice.” Paul, blind in Damascus.
Pound, pound, pound.
I hope you’re not on the anvil. (Unless you need to be, and if so, I hope you are.) Anvil time is not to be avoided; it’s to be experienced. Although the tunnel is dark, it does go through the mountain. Anvil time reminds us of who we are and who God is. We shouldn’t try to escape it. To escape it could be to escape God.
God sees our life from beginning to end. He may lead us through a storm at age thirty so we can endure a hurricane at age sixty. An instrument is useful only if it’s in the right shape. A dull ax or bent screwdriver needs attention, and so do we. A good blacksmith keeps his tools in shape. So does God.
Should God place you on his anvil, be thankful. It means he thinks you’re still worth reshaping.
From On the Anvil:
Stories On Being Shaped Into God’s Image
This is a new edition of Max’s first book.
It contains an updated forward, written by him, as well as thoughtful questions for each chapter.
© (Tyndale House, 1985, 2008) Max Lucado