Jesus welcomed the people, taught them about the Kingdom of God and healed those in need. Luke 9:11

Seeds of the Kingdom

Telling the Difference

by Fiona Horrobin

31 January 2012

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Grain is crushed for bread but one does not thresh it forever: one drives the cart wheel and horses over it, but does not pulverise it. This also comes from the Lord of hosts; he is wonderful in counsel and excellent in wisdom.
Isaiah 28:28-29, NRSV

Our Bible teacher friend Stuart McAlpine brought this scripture to our attention when he was teaching on the presence of God. Grain which is used for food needs to be threshed in order for the chaff to be separated and discarded. The grain is then ready and fit for use.

We too need our character threshed (sifted) in order that the chaff is blown away and the pure grain remains and can become fruitful. The difficulty for us all is in telling the difference between the enemy thrashing us and the Lord threshing us. We need to know which is which, but how can we tell? It would be very easy to put every obstacle and difficulty down to the enemy. It’s a much easier option to blame him and take our eyes off ourselves and what the Lord may be doing in us through any given circumstance.

In any expedition there will be challenges, and those challenges will lead to greater stamina and character building. They’re part of learning and growing. They develop an inner strength and resilience within us. Keeping ourselves comfortable and protected is not the answer to a fulfilling and fruitful life. The grain would remain with the chaff and never come into the place of multiplication and destiny. When we’re disciples of the Lord Jesus Christ we’re on an expedition of a lifetime!

It’s essential we identify the Lord’s threshing, which may be painful, but will produce a harvest in due time. It’s the Lord who teaches us lessons, as His children, and not the enemy. The character of the enemy is to destroy and bring death. Because it’s easier many Christians blame the enemy for difficulties and problems rather than embracing the threshing the Lord is bringing into their lives.

It does seem easier to put hardships down to enemy attack rather than seeking the Lord and discerning His threshing and refining. Without doubt the Lord will allow certain things in our life to take us into a greater redemptive plan. These things may come in the grit of painful relationships, disappointments, frustrations with timing and the waiting for something, or simply in everyday challenges and obstacles.

Thankfully the above verse tells us that the threshing doesn’t last forever. There are seasons of threshing. If you’re frustrated today or feel the enemy’s the problem it is particularly vital you remember the Lord’s threshing floor, and yield to His truth and light. Asking questions of the Lord is not wrong.

Prayer: Lord what is it You’re showing me? What is it You’re doing? Help me to understand Your ways with me as I surrender to Your Lordship. Help me to discern the difference between the thrashing of the enemy which I must take authority over in Your name and the threshing You are doing in my life which I must yield to as being part of You separating between the chaff and the wheat, the precious and the vile. Amen.

Fiona Horrobin has been a key part of pioneering the work of Ellel Ministries International. From over twenty years experience of ministering into broken lives, she is passionate to see healing as integral to discipleship and Christian growth.


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