North Valley Honey, Hot Wax and Holiness
When we first bought the land. It was an untamed desert. I shot a few rattlesnakes, drove out some dope growers and meth-heads and harvested some bee-hives. The property we own is a nine-acre lot with several buildings in need of repair, on a 15-acre campus of what used to be a bar and premier wedding venue. Due to the great recession in 2008 the property was sold and lotters and thieves decided to camp out. They stole wire, broke or stole everything. Over the course of a few years, while to property was virtually abandoned, bees made their homes, in several of the buildings, bridges and other structures. Instead of killing the bees, I bought a bee suit, watched a few YouTube videos, called a few bee gurus and harvested the bee hives, making bee boxes, processed 10 gallons of what we call North Valley’s Holy Honey and a few special candles, made from the left over bees-wax.
So what’s holiness have to do with this? James says holiness is a process. The phrase “testing of your faith” literally means a refinement process. It’s a rare phrase that is used only once in the NT (I Pet 1:7) and twice in the OT.(Ps 12:6, Prv 27:21). The idea is that holiness is a refinement process. In the Bible the illustration is gold. To process Gold there is a 5 step process. It would be heating, Purifying, Re-heating, Molding, and lastly, Strengthening. This process is exactly the same as making wax. I did this over the month of December. I wanted to make a few candles for Leslie. I took the chunks of dirty wax, melted them down and started what would be a long process, that would take a course of a few days. I’m sure others could do it quicker and better but for me, I am just glad I got through it. That’s holiness here in the Christian Life.
James says that as we allow this process of trials, work through our life, it will produce in us something far greater than patience but steadfastness. Steadfastness means a staying power, strong a stick-to-it-ev-ness, a perseverance, a hang in there attitude, a get-er done mindset. We must remember that we are God’s workmanship (Eph 2:10). We are being worked on by God himself, and the trials we face are part of the process.
1) What about your attitude needs to change as the going gets tough?
2) How is the Lord using the trials, to produce in you “steadfastness.”
3) What stage of the process would you say you are in right now… heating, Purifying, Re-heating, Molding, or, Strengthening?