Burn It All Down

However, what things were gain to me, these have I counted loss for Christ. Yes most assuredly, and I count all things to be loss for the excellency of the knowledge of Christ Jesus, my Lord, for whom I suffered the loss of all things, and count them nothing but refuse, that I may gain Christ and be found in him, not having a righteousness of my own, that which is of the law, but that which is through faith in Christ, the righteousness which is from God by faith; Philippians 3:7 WEB

I once had a well paying job with great benefits, at least by South Carolina standards. I was a maintenance supervisor over a crew of men in a factory. It was the only job that I ever had that provided health insurance, and a matching 401k. The boss loved me. It was a great job, but I had to work twelve hour shifts every Saturday and Sunday doing maintenance while the plant was closed.

During that time, something began stirring within me, a spiritual hunger. I had not been able to attend church in years and I began to crave more of God in my life. I began listening to an audio Bible all day by keeping an ear bud in one ear. A desire came on me to fast for a while. I can tell you that if your body ever feels like 'fasting' that you can be absolutely sure that it is the Holy Spirit prompting you. No one desires to fast on their own accord, feasting is more appealing, but I began to fast and pray regularly.

I would hear myself praying crazy prayers for the Lord to remove anything that was holding me back from being closer to Him. I would pray: 'Put me where I need to be Lord. Burn anything out of me that needs to go.' After a few weeks, they suddenly called me to the office and laid me off without warning. I was a bit shocked at first. I felt wronged. I did not see that coming and I had just bought a house. I could feel bitterness wanting to creep in, but I also knew in my heart that God had something better, for no one could have taken my job away unless He allowed it.

My desire was to work in a Christian environment, like a Christian book store, where I could be around other believers and talk about Jesus. Maybe God was making that happen. Not! He put me right in the middle of a huge group of hardcore sinners, the kind that you avoid in the alley, and for one third of the pay. I humbled myself, kept my head down, and gave God full permission to do whatever He wanted in my life. I tried my best to be the perfect employee, and led some of them to the Lord. Soon, it was a Christian environment. Then He pushed me into my own computer business, through Bible College, and then much later, into full time ministry.

I probably would have retired as a supervisor there because I was happy with the job, but the Lord had so much more waiting on me once I became willing to let it all go, and let Him have His way in my life. Now I welcome being laid off. Unemployment has become a sign of promotion to me. Each time that it has happened, after I went through the dry time of desperation that always follows, it ended up being better. I can honestly say 'Burn it all down Lord.' Paul counted everything that he had lost as rubbish, or dung, compared to what he had gained, and what was still coming.

If you face losing a job, or work at one that you despise, know that God is still in control. No one can take away your job without Him allowing it. Press into Him wholeheartedly. Work for Him. Reject the fear and doubt that comes. Know that in the end, this will work out for your good. Allow God to remove the things that need to go. Know that promotion is coming, though it may take you along the scenic route.

Prayer: Heavenly Father have Your way in my life. I want more of You today. Guide me, teach me, draw me, and use me. I surrender to all that You have for me Lord, in the name of Jesus Christ I pray.

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