Thursday, April 02, 2009

Refiners Fire

Some few years ago I stood in front of the congregation of the Ward I was a member of at the time and related a incident that had touched me greatly.

One of the ladies of the Ward and I were talking, and she, knowing of my interest in precious metals and refining, gave me a paper with the following story on it.

There was a group of women in a Bible study on the book of Malachi. As they were studying chapter three, they came across verse three which says: "He will sit as a refiner and purifier of silver." (Malachi 3:3) This verse puzzled the women and they wondered what this statement meant about the character and nature of God.

One of the women offered to find out about the process of refining silver and get back to the group at their next Bible study. That week this woman called up a silver smith and made an appointment to watch him at work. She didn't mention anything about the reason for her interest in silver beyond her curiosity about the process of refining silver. As she watched the silver smith, he held a piece of silver over the fire and let it heat up. He explained that in refining silver, one needed to hold the silver in the middle of the fire where the flames were hottest as to burn away all the impurities. The woman thought about God holding us in such a hot spot--then she thought again about the verse, that he sits as a refiner and purifier of silver.

She asked the silver smith if it was true that he had to sit there in front of the fire the whole time the silver was being refined. The man answered that yes, he not only had to sit there holding the silver, but he had to keep his eyes on the silver the entire time it was in the fire. If the silver was left even a moment too long in the flames, it would be destroyed. The woman was silent for a moment. Then she asked the silver smith, "How do you know when the silver is fully refined?"

He smiled at her and answered, "Oh, that's easy--when I see my image in it."

I was reminded of that today as I was looking over some Silver Eagles I'd picked up a few days ago.

One of the coins was a Proof coin, and as I looked at it under my loupe, I was impressed by the slick reflectivity of the surface of the silver. Like a mirror it reflected whatever was in front of distortions...only a perfect image looking back at me.

I had to wonder...are these the times that will try us like a refining fire?? Will the image that is eventually cast back at us resemble in any way the vision our founders had for the country they pledged their lives....their fortunes.....and their sacred honor for.

We can only wait and see.


GUYK said...

few of our current leaders have any honor...let alone the kind of honor of our founders

kdzu said...

Very little honor and even fewer principles. Sadly I see no one person or group on the horizon to unify the people who get it.

Anonymous said...

... beautiful coin.... and a beautiful story.....