“The crucible is for silver, and the furnace is for gold, and the Lord tests hearts.” – Proverbs 17:3 (ESV)
A crucible is a very specialized container that is used to heat metal to the point of melting it. It is a necessary step in the refining process of changing what is unusable into something usable and more valuable. Our verse speaks of refining silver and gold so that it can be suitable for other purposes. This proverb of Solomon teaches us that God allows us to be in the crucible in order to test us. One of the purposes of melting and refining is to burn away the dross and other impurities. It also is to form, shape and strengthen the metal. God does test our hearts for it is our heart’s devotion and love that he wants from us. Another verse in the Old Testament and in the New Testament says that we are to love the Lord our God with our whole heart. In order for that to happen, we have to allow God to refine our hearts in the crucible of life. That is not something we really choose to go through but when we do, we come out knowing and loving God in a more perfect way. It’s a promise, let’s embrace it.