It’s winter here. But I don’t mind winter so much. It’s the place of hope. It’s the place of growth. It’s the place of preparation. It’s the time of thought and consideration. It’s the time of being surrounded by cold and apparent death, yet beneath that which is apparent is life…..sweet, wonderful life. And that life will return in scant moments, but it must first survive the winter. We are exactly the same as a fire in our own lives. Our soul cries out for something more until we discover God is real and when we give ourselves fully to Him, we begin to understand the fire He desires to build within our very soul.
Sometimes the greatest growth in our lives will occur in the winter, when all is bleak, when all seems lost, when a situation is about to overcome and overwhelm us. That’s when we really require some warmth.
We need fire.
Like many men, I like to make fire happen. I’m not a pyromaniac, though, only in my fireplace. In fact I Just built a piece of furniture to hold the components necessary to make making fire a bit easier and a not so messy. Fire good. As I write this it is eleven degrees Fahrenheit outside. Fire very good….at least if it is controlled.
And that’s the problem. Fire may be a dangerous thing if misused or if neglected. Making fire is a science. You must begin with something that has a low combustion temperature, some kindling, building in levels of things that will burn at increasingly higher temperatures. This is all done so that maximum energy is built with each layer of materials and ignites the next layer as it turns itself into coals to maintain the temperature necessary to keep the fire going.
We need hot coals
As fuel is added, heat is increased and if not monitored may rage out of control.
When we allow God to build a fire in us, when we give up control of any and all situations, dreams, aspirations, thoughts, words and actions we will discover it happens the same way as the fire we build in a fireplace and because we have given over control of the situation to the One Who knew of it long before you were even here, and we trust Him to bring us through it, we own a kind of hope the world cannot understand. Only God can make this kind of fire ignite within the human soul. He begins at faith, which is the two edged sword of believing in the unseen and making the unseen believable. That has a very low kindling temperature. It then ignites virtue in us and leads us into seeking knowledge of the Firestarter. This is the formula the Holy Spirit uses to make coals:
2 Peter 1:5-7
But also for this very reason, giving all diligence, add to your faith virtue, to virtue knowledge, to knowledge self-control, to self-control perseverance, to perseverance godliness, to godliness brotherly kindness, and to brotherly kindness love. NKJV
All of the things that God utilizes in His fire building pattern are coals to maintain the fire of love in every aspect of our life. When we are suffering through a winter experience, the coals we have made through our relationship with God will keep our soul warm as the winter approaches….or even in the midst, or if it last for a while, or even a lifetime. As we experience God’s fullness as we toss each layer into the fire begun by God Himself, we are able to trod through the experience with the knowledge that the King of the universe Has us in the palm of His hand.
One very important point; This fire must be built prior to the storm so the coals will maintain us through the winter. So if you haven’t allowed the Chief Firemaker to begin a good work in you, think about the winter to come, for it will come, and allow Him to show you how you too may experience the greatest thing in this life or the next, the fire of the Holy Spirit, which may never be quenched by darkness of any kind.