The Pressure Cooker
Nothing feels quite as hot and tight as being inside a pressure cooker. I remember that my mother-in-law often used a pressure cooker to prepare the tenderest meats in the quickest time. While I loved to eat those great dinners that came out of that cooking pot, I always felt uncomfortable - even afraid, of the devise itself.
She told me what could happen if you didn't control the pressure just right because she had seen some kitchen explosions. I wanted the tender food but I didn't want what it took to make it so. That's the same way I feel about the spiritual pressure cooker.
It's hard to imagine anything good coming from the enormous stress many of us are under. There is a good description of it in Psalm 55: "I am restless in my complaint and am surely distracted, because of the voice of the enemy, because of the pressure of the wicked." (Verse2-3) "My heart is in anguish within me, and the terrors of death have fallen upon me. Fear and trembling come upon me; and horror has overwhelmed me." (Verse 4-5) That about sums it up, doesn't it?
In such times we have to remember that God is making good use of our stress. Maybe the enemy of our soul means it for our harm but God is tenderizing us. He knows just how to control the pressure to produce something good. "Cast your burden upon the Lord, and he will sustain you; he will never allow the righteous to be shaken." (Psalm 55:22) You may be shaking but you won't be shaken. Hang in there!