The crucible for silver and the furnace for gold, but man is tested by the praise he receives. Pro. 27:21.
Welcome to this New Year and I lend my voice among many others to wish you a blessed and Happy New Year. I will bet that at any time you will choose a gift of refined gold or silver over its raw form which looks like dirt or ordinary rock. This metal is melted under extreme heat which also burns all the particles and impurities that will not burn are sieved out. What is left is pure gold or silver whose value is high and only a few can afford it. The way a person responds to praise is what reveals his character – whether he is gold or the dross that burns up or sieved out.
Recall when the women in 1 Sam. 18:7 praised David and Saul. This praise revealed the ugly jealous character in Saul and for more than ten years he hunted David down to kill him. Recall also the praise King Herod received in Acts 12:21-23. He believed that he was a god and had no room for the real God, but he did not live to see the next day. What about King Nebuchadnezzar who could not wait for people to praise him but went ahead to praise himself? He revealed his proud heart and he ended up in the forest like a wild animal.
Apparently, the first sin ever committed is the sin of pride through Lucifer. He wanted the praise that was due to God alone. As this year rolls on, let us be on the lookout regarding the praise we receive or desire.