butterfly several weeks back. Be encouraged.
I had an awesome experience today. I went running in the pouring rain along the riverside, the Burmese mountains to my right and the Thailand mountains to my left. The rain was heavy but refreshing, the dark green mountain tops had a thick mist around them. I was looking at Burma and stopped in my tracks. I stood looking thru the rain into the jungle thinking of all that I had just seen and learned of what happens behind the cover of the thick trees and thought “Lord, please don’t call me there” Then this song came on my headphones “in the fire” is the only words I remember. At that moment I felt You saying In the fire you will find Me… the story of Meshack, Shadrack and the other guy came alive to me. I could almost see the flames craving to incinerate my flesh to ashes, burning hotter the longer they waited to throw me in. Those men denied the fear that pumped thru their veins and did not bend their knee to it. They walked into that fire fueled by their deep love for the truth and majesty of God. It was in the fire God stood beside them. As the song played on, my mind was filled with phrases, pictures, stories… God will always encourage us, speak to us, hope for us but to encounter Him, to have Him walk with you in the fire, to experience His presence like never before, you have to step into the fire… my mind can't comprehend it.
Refining fire. Fire has so many amazing purposes when thought of in connection with Gods will. I am becoming fascinated with it. We are to go into the fire. God is always in the thick of the fight and He wants us near to Him. Fire sets fire to everything it touches. You and I were baptized with the Holy Spirit and with Fire. Fire is contagious, fire is engulfing, it is powerful, fierce, intense. The very word beings forth an emotion. Someone said to be on fire is a person of passion, action, and conviction. Knowing we are the fire of the world, the light of the world is incredibly freeing for someone like me who despises the boring, rigid life religion tries to constrict people to. God always calls us into the fire to fully experience Him, to be purified-as fire purifies gold., and to be so engulfed in it that we emerge a passionate flame that burns brightly in the darkest night, a flame so intense it sets fire to everything it touches. You in Christ are free to live on fire. Fire is pure and fierce, darkness cannot contain it or diminish it. You are to be the same in the world, deeply rooted and so filled with God that worldly ways and desires do not extinguish who you are in God, instead your life, if you fuel the fire of God, will captivate others and dance against the deepest darkness. To know that God has set us free, to live out loud our passions burning inside is exhilarating.
“The people walking in darkness have seen a great light; on those living in the land of shadow and death, a light has dawned” Isa 9.2 Our very life is meant to shine into others darkness, we are to live a life that showers hope. You have the potential to shine a light on those sitting in deaths shadows. “let your light shine before others” Mt 5.16 Realizing that this fire that God sets to our life is not for us alone is sombering (I don’t think sombering is a word but it is now) yet exciting. We carry this responsibility to keep the oil replenishing our fire so that we will have the opportunity to provide a saving light “to set those in darkness free” Is 42.
I’ve always been drawn to that verse that says to set the captives free, and we can do that by living out loud, passionate, and fully alive… Wow, what opportunity. I hope our lives of freedom in Jesus and passion will set free those living with their light constricted under a bowl of religious bull to shine and those who don’t even know any light. We can save people and pierce satan's darkness by filling our lamp stand with the oil of His presence.
The voice of the Lord calls to each of us that are willing to be set on fire “whom shall I send and who will go for us” I hope you answer as Isaiah did “Here am I, send me” (6:8) and when step into His fire you will emerge refined, purified, burning, and contagious. You will come forth as gold and open your eyes to these words “Arise, shine for your light is come and the glory of the Lord is risen upon you… the gentiles shall come to your light and the kings to the brightness of your rising” Isaiah 60.1,3
May you experience His closeness as you walk through your own refining fires.