Friday, June 20, 2008

Refined by Fire by Anthony & Chrystal Obey

“Refined by Fire” is a series of books a lot like the “Chicken Soup” books. They are compilations of stories from women who have been through tough times, but with the help and grace of God, have come out on the other end stronger and better for it.

This book contains 25 stories and each one will amaze you. You wonder how these women ever make it through the tough times in their lives, much less come out with their love for God intact. In fact, most of these women question it themselves as well as question God, but find that God is with them and helps them through. These stories re-iterate the truth that all people suffer, and sometimes most especially Christians!! The hard part is trying to figure out what God is trying to teach you during the tough times. There is always a reason for the suffering – to make you stretch and follow the path God has in store for you, to find peace, to persevere, and of course ultimately to bring you closer to God. Each of the stories has a different trial, a different lesson, a different voice, but each one celebrates the Glory of God!

Everyone will be able to personally relate to at least one of the stories in the book. I related to the woman who had been through a divorce and spent time wondering why. I have not been in every situation that the women in the book have – I don’t think anyone will go through every single situation in life – but all the stories touched me. It was interesting to see how God works in the lives of other people. Plus, their stories bring understand into your own life a little. I can now see that the divorce I went through ended up being for the best. It didn’t seem like it at the time and I spent some time having a pity-party for myself. However, if I had continued in that relationship, I would not be where I am now. I would not be married to my current, wonderful husband nor would I have my two beautiful children. So, even though it was a tough time for me and I felt like I had wasted a few years of my life; it turned out to be a learning experience, a growing experience, and most definitely put me into a better place in life!

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