I’ve been thinking more about how God treats us as His treasured possession (Deut. 14:12). To Him, we are a rare jewel in His hand (Isaiah 62:3).
Imagine how you treat your most precious, treasured possession, perhaps a gemstone. You protect it carefully; you position it in the best light; you refresh any parts of it that seem worn or fading. If we care for our earthly valuables in this way, consider how much more God will protect us, position us, and refresh us.
I normally think of God’s great care for me through Psalm 23. I like to note all the verbs of God like how He makes us lie down, how He leads us beside still waters, and how He restores our souls. That’s if I’m understanding a sheep and shepherd metaphor. But if I see myself as a rare jewel, a treasured possession, then the verbs change. In this case, I see God refining (Zechariah 13:9), purging (Isaiah 1:25), shining (Philippians 2:15). The verbs, unpleasant and purifying, must work to make us shine.
I think of the heat of refinement. I think of watching a cobbler shine the tough leather of shoes till they shine. I think of observing the protection and care of the rare jewels I’ve seen displayed in museums. It’s a harsh, stifling experience that’s necessary to reveal the stunning beauty God created in us.
Growing up in the Lord means we walk alongside the gentle Shepherd and the One who refines us.