The Story of the Test of Fire
By Adriana Gonzalez
The thought of making a video came to us as a sudden inspiration from a friend. Though we had little knowledge of the video-making process, the idea made sense, and so we contacted our videographer friends at Creative Lab. We wanted a video that would powerfully communicate the non-negotiable issues of life, marriage, and religious liberty.
Excited at the prospect, Jeremy from Creative Lab agreed and got to work right away. A few days later Jeremy emailed us a script. We loved it immediately. The script described a blacksmith in his forge and iron words in the fire.
"Jeremy, this is great!" we told him on the phone.
We heard a sigh of relief on the other end of the line. "I'm so glad you liked it. The idea came to me in a dream!" Jeremy explained that he had received the inspiration for the video while he slept, and when he awoke he hurriedly wrote down the dream. His idea was very specific, very vivid, and he knew it was from the Lord.
"But," he continued, "there is one problem. We need a nineteenth century-style blacksmith and his forge." Our area is not known for nineteenth century anything. Right away, our friend Rick came to mind, though, as the one who might know if any 1800's-looking blacksmiths lived anywhere nearby. But it turned out that Rick did not know of anyone who fit that description. He promised to keep his eyes open, but it looked like a door may have closed. The next day our brother-in-law, Doug, called and exclaimed, "I found your blacksmith! I found your blacksmith!" Strange, we thought, because we had never told anyone but Rick about our search for a forger. But the Lord knew of our search, and He tied the pieces together. Doug had been to see Rick that afternoon about another matter, and the conversation had turned toward Doug's friend Steve, who has an old-fashioned home and a barn and "a blacksmith shed that looks like something out of the 1800's."
"Did you say that your friend has an old-fashioned blacksmith shed?! You have got to call Adriana!" Rick marveled that this seemingly unrelated visit from Doug had turned out to be the answer to our request. Isn't the Lord creative in how He uses the parts of His body to work a masterpiece?
And so "Test of Fire" came to be. Jeremy filmed and assembled it together beautifully, and in a few weeks we unveiled it in front of about 75 friends. We also put it up on YouTube.
We honestly did not anticipate anything. It was simply inexperience that kept us from forming expectations. But beginning on Easter Sunday, we watched as the number of hits went up by the thousands and then the tens of thousands every day. The media caught on and aired it both locally and nationally. We heard stories of people repeatedly receiving the video, emailed to them from family and friends. The video was popping up on more websites than we could keep up with. Fox TV aired or talked about "Test of Fire" five times, including a live interview on the Lou Dobbs Show. Glenn Beck posted it on the Blaze and talked about it on his radio show. And EWTN and Catholic TV continue to share it with their viewers.
Today, the YouTube video is approaching 2 million hits. We have also heard from people all around the nation and the world about how "Test of Fire" has touched their hearts. Often, they use the words "inspired by the Holy Spirit" to describe the video, and several brothers and sisters have noted that "Test of Fire" gives them hope for our nation's future.
The story of the Test of Fire is a glimpse of God's power. We know that we did not pave the way for the video's success. God did. He chose to bless it and to use it to touch millions of people, even in other nations. What can we say except what St. Paul says in Ephesians?
"Glory be to him whose power, working in us, can do infinitely more than we can ask or imagine; glory be to him from generation to generation in the Church and in Christ Jesus for ever and ever! Amen."