“He will sit as a refiner . . of silver.” Malachi 3:3 NIV

“Purity only increases value and worth; impurity devalues one’s soul.”

My thoughts today are about “mixture.”

Probably none of us are as pure and pristine as we wish we were, until and unless we allow the Holy Spirit to cleanse and purify our hearts. Paul wrote about the “old man” with deceitful desires, and the “new man” created in true righteousness. Ephesians 4:22-32 NIV. Though it causes you concern, you are a mixture and within that mixture are impurities. Things you’ve said or done may have occasionally been less than edifying to others. In the privacy of your thoughts you might hold opinions and attitudes you would not likely want everyone to know. Those are impurities that God is working to remove, refining your life. When indulged, impurities depreciate who you are and diminish what you become. The things of lesser quality allowed in your life displace the right things of greater quality that God intends for your life. What you allow controls you; what you change frees you.

Paul described that dilemma of mixture this way, “No matter which way I turn, I can’t make myself do right. I want to, but I can’t. When I want to do good, I don’t. And when I try not to do wrong, I do it anyway . . it seems to be a fact of life that when I want to do what is right, I inevitably do what is wrong . . what a miserable person I am! Who will free me from this life that is dominated by sin? Thank God! The answer is in Jesus Christ our Lord.” Romans 7:18-25 NLT.

That’s the only place you will find the right answers for your life, whatever the question about going forward – “The answer is in Jesus Christ our Lord!” Chapter 7 accurately diagnoses the problem, but must be accompanied by chapter 8, which assures your successful deliverance. Exactly because Jesus is Lord, He does not merely have the answer; thank God, man’s Savior is the Answer! See John 14:6-7 NIV.

Can you change? Not by yourself. “Change usually comes when it hurts so much that you have to change, when you learn so much that you want to change, and when you receive so much that you welcome change.” (Author unknown). Those phrases describe three elements for motivating change: pain and suffering that will not allow you to remain as you were, truth that brings understanding of change, and mercy and grace that empowers change. See 1 John 3:1-3 NIV.

Change does not just happen; real and lasting change results from the patient intervention of God in your life. The Bible says, “God will be like a refiner’s fire . . He will sit as a refiner and purifier of silver . . then the Lord will have men who will bring offerings in righteousness.” Malachi 3:2-3 NIV. Refining precious metal is a process that requires skill and patience, but also heat. Heat is indispensable to the refining process. As heat increases, any incompatible mixture separates so impurities are identified and removed. Integrity replaces mixture; purity displaces impurity.

Purity only increases value and worth; impurity devalues one’s soul. That is true in so many ways and areas of one’s life. “Avoid every kind of evil. May God Himself, the God of peace, sanctify you through and through. May your whole spirit, soul and body be kept blameless at the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ. The One who calls you is faithful and He will do it.” 1 Thessalonians 5:22-24 NIV. Blameless; that’s 100% pure! Read Psalm 51:7/10 NLT.

My prayer for you today is that you will be pure of heart and single-hearted for God.