The Rub

Have you ever experienced the rub?  You may be wondering what I mean!  Well, I’ve been trying to figure out how to describe it.  The best way, so far, that I’ve come up with is this:  On one hand (hand 1) I have the understanding that God is good, that He loves me, that He is working all things together for my good.   And on the other hand (hand 2) there is something I have believed God for, for 27 years, and His word on the subject is still that same word: “wait”.  In the middle of those two hands is the Rub!

“Wait”, “Wait Expectantly”, “Wait for Me” are all ok until you’ve heard them 20 years.  I’ve never been one to like that word, but it’s gotten a bit worse honestly. I don’t want to hear that word again, and I don’t want to feel that way, because waiting is a tool God uses.  It’s in the Word to wait for the Lord, and that when we do we are blessed.  So, what’s the deal?  I asked God for insight so that I can pass on what the deal is for others who might be in “the rub”.

Between those two “hands” there is a world of stuff; there are fears, doubts, growth, increased faith, increased intimacy with God, struggle, restlessness, and temptation to give up on the vision, or word you’ve believed for.  Will we give up or will we press on?  The enemy would love for us to believe that thing won’t ever happen, even though God said it would. I believe the Israelites spent 40 years in the rub…that in between place of receiving a word and it coming to pass, and not many trusted God into the Promised Land, but we can!

The word says that God is refining us like silver, like precious silver. Listen for God’s process on us in this.   I have a kit to make silver.  I have a small packet that contains silver clay.  It is a really touchy substance to work with (much like we are).  It must remain a precise dampness…too much and it’s useless, too little and it’s useless (God waters us perfectly to keep us usable).  The goal is to mold the silver into the shape I want quickly, and then it’s time to fire it.  As I torch the silver clay, I can see the clay burn away from the silver inside till all that is left is the pure silver.  As I am torching it I am looking for a specific peach colored glow that tells me it’s done.  The molding process is the quickest part, it’s after firing that we are in the rub (we aren’t what we were, but we aren’t what we will be).  After the piece cools it’s time to really go to work on it.  Metal brushes and metal instruments are used to scrape and brush and polish the silver. It takes a lot of hands on work. My hands can really get messed up by the metal brushes as I work on the silver, but the more rubbing with the brushes, tools, and cloths the more of a mirror like shine it will have. (We are made in His image)

I continued to pray about this place and God revealed something else.   I had been asking myself: How can I reconcile what I know about God’s love for me (hand 1) with being told to still wait after all this time (hand 2)?  And what He pointed out was that those two “hands” are at war with each other in my heart.  The second “hand” of not wanting to wait is fighting for first place in my life and in my heart, and that it isn’t a matter of reconciling those two thoughts – it’s a matter of choosing which I will believe and which I will make first in my life.  Do I keep God in first place or do I decide to go my way to have my way? Do I trust God even when it hurts?

For me, God remains first.  I thank God for how He’s shaped me, continue to wait for what will be, and continue to get shined up between God’s two perfect hands.  He knows what He’s doing!

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