(Review) As Silver Refined: Learning to Embrace Life's Disappointments by Kay Arthur
Publisher: WaterBrook Press
Genre: Nonfiction, Life's Disappointments.
Rating: 5 stars for excellent.
For more information, see publisher's site: WaterBrook Press.
A 16 week Bible study is available in the new edition.
As Silver Refined explains God's work in molding us in a refiner's fire, by turning up the heat process through hardships in life (that seem to us as mistakes) in order to remove impurities in our character. The refining work of the Father transforms us into a vessel where God "...can see Himself in the silver...."
Arthur begins by explaining the work and purpose of a silver refiner, and then emphasizes and focuses on God's process in the refining work.
Arthur explains that people do not always accept and submit to God's refining work in life. Further, Satan uses strategies to hinder God's work. These strategies are "distraction, deception, disappointment, discouragement, dejection, despair, and demoralization."
Several themes in the book are taught (the following list represent a few):
Submission to the Lord,
Resisting the enemy,
Our future hope.
I've had As Silver Refined in my to be read pile for several years. A few years ago I began reading the book, but placed it aside (not sure why.) Possibly it is because I was not ready to read the book. Instead, I needed to read it at this point in life. This has happened before, a book (Christian nonfiction) is purchased, I may or may not read a few pages, it gets placed aside, later I pick it back up and it's just what I needed to read at this particular stage.
The first point I want to mention is As Silver Refined is not a quick read and it's not meant to be. It's meant to be thoughtfully read, studied, pausing to reflect and pray.
I love Kay Arthur's point in "not looking back at our past as failures." Although I'm still having a problem with this point. It's hard for my human mind to accept my past abuse as being apart of God's plan; but I trust Him, and have faith in Him, that some how and some way He has a plan for my painful past.
Arthur is a kind and patient teacher. Her readers are referred to as "beloved." As Silver Refined is rough, because the subject matter pokes at our hearts, it pierces our pride and expectations. However, Arthur with loving composure has a way of taking the reader by the hand and stating matter-of-fact, beloved you've been looking at your life through the wrong lens.
Several gems are hidden among the pages-teaching what is rarely spoken of: a new view of the people who wronged us, a lengthy definition of meekness, and rejoicing in the crisis.
Lastly, most of the book is about difficult teachings, but the book also shows us how to move beyond the dark cloud of disappointments, and toward growth and hope for the future.
Kay Arthur has written a splendid, meaningful, beautiful, and edifying book. Anyone who struggles with regrets, disappointments, and depression over their past or present life circumstances can be ministered to by this book.