Fire and Ice

Exposure to fire melts the ice in our hearts.
It calms the cold places and brings life to the dead places.
It warms the soul and calms the mind.

Hebrews 12:18-29 “…. 28 Therefore, since we are receiving a kingdom that cannot be shaken, let us be thankful, and so worship God acceptably with reverence and awe, 29 for our “God is a consuming fire.”

A warm fire in our fire pit is something that draws all of us together and causes us to just stare into it. I love a good fire. I love sitting around it with friends and I love staring into it when I’m alone. There’s something calming about fire. Something enlivening. Something exciting. It’s always changing, always working, always powerful and yet the presence of the fire draws us to rest from our works. It invites a holy pause and creates a dwelling place for a circle of friends and family to form. In that circle no one rises up higher than another. No, they all just look at the fire.

Have you been to a fire? It’s an experience that creates memories. 

I love encounters with fire. I know it’s purifying power and that what it seems to destroy is only changed. Energy is released. Bonds are formed. Yet, I realize that some reading this are those that might have been burned by fire in the past and or who have misunderstood the power of the fire. Perhaps you were young and didn’t understand it yet or never were exposed one. 

As parents, we taught our chidren about fire from an early age. Our three boys loved fires and they grew up around a campfires in the summer months. We’d let them prepare the logs and gather sticks and even light it. They loved to see how big they could make it and had a hard time not poking it with sticks, moving it around and seeing what effect it would have on things that they threw in it.  

What lessons were important with fire?

  1. Have respect for it’s potential to purify but also to burn us if we are careless around it.
  2. At the proper time it will be perfect for roasting marshmallows, but you have to wait. 🙂
  3. You have to wait on the fire.
  4. You can’t control it but you can affect it the size of it
  5. You can accelerate it by pouring oil on it
  6. You can put it out by pouring water on it
  7. But if you to be the builder of the perfect fire, there are practices that make it perfect. 

At our house we start with seasoned wood, stack it just right and then pour oil on it. The oil catches flame quickly and preserves the flame on the wood until it can be consumed by the fire. Not just any wood makes a good fire, at least in the beginning. It takes prepared wood, some old logs that have died to their former purpose, been chopped up and allowed themselves to be torn apart so they could burn effectively.  We’d let that pile of old wood burn for a while. We’d wait. Then, once that cluster was burning well, hot coals formed, then those fresh new logs could be added to the fire. When the fire was hot, they’d burn up anyway, regardless of their condition. 

Do you see any parallels? Our God is like this. He is a consuming fire and we are part of the story. For him to set our hearts ablaze we need to submit ourselves to the fire. Sometimes we are fresh and green and new and it helps us to burn faster if we are thrown into a pile of already burning hearts who know how to surrender to the fire of God and let it burn with passion and completion until ALL things can be transformed in the midst of them. 

Abba Father, I pray for your cleansing fire to touch us today. Come. Enter in. We open the doors of our hearts to allow your cleansing fire into the deepest places of our being. You are creator and author of our lives. You know the deepest needs of our hearts. You know the places that are hard and resistant like ice where we don’t want to let go, where trust has not happened. Come and meet us in that place Abba. Let the fire of your Holy Spirit consume the deepest darkest places in our soul and light the places only you can see. Enter in now. Enter in. You are the great Comforter, the Consuming Fire that we need. Come Savior, come. Purify our souls like glass in the fire. Make us clear like glass in our conscience, in our hearts and in our soul. Leave us refreshed and free. Make us whole. Come Holy Spirit Come. I am open. 

Suggested reading 1 Kings 18, Phillipians 1, Hebrews 12:18-29

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