I heard a truck in the driveway and the first thing I did was glance at the wood stove.
Was there wood in the stove or had I let the fire go out?
As is often the case, I had been caught up in my book-making and I had forgotten to tend the fire.
So, before Phil came in I quickly added wood and was sheepishly grinning when he entered the den.
After 38 years, Phil is accustomed to those sheepish grins. 🙂
Yes, I am easily distracted, yet when I am working on art, time literally slips away. I am totally immmersed in the creative process and I need reminders to fulfill my other responsibilites.
We do this spirtually as well. We can get so caught up in “doing” for God that we forget to “tend the fire.” What does it mean to “tend the fire” spiritually?
It means that we are re-stocking our lives with fuel from the Source, in other words making sure that we are receiving fresh spiritual food from God’s Word.
I have been a Christian for over 55 years, yet I can’t survive on old teaching from my past – as good as it was. Anyone who heats with wood will tell you – old wood burns up fast!
I need to allow Holy Spirit to speak to me with fresh insight for the current issues I face today. As I read the Bible, the Living Word, it feeds the flames of the spiritual fire within me.
John the Baptist spoke of this fire in Matthew 3:4-11. First, Matthew describes John’s appearence, unique to say the least.
4 John’s clothes were made of camel’s hair, and he had a leather belt around his waist. His food was locusts and wild honey. 5 People went out to him from Jerusalem and all Judea and the whole region of the Jordan. 6 Confessing their sins, they were baptized by him in the Jordan River.
7 But when he saw many of the Pharisees and Sadducees coming to where he was baptizing, he said to them: “You brood of vipers! Who warned you to flee from the coming wrath? 8 Produce fruit in keeping with repentance. 9 And do not think you can say to yourselves, ‘We have Abraham as our father.’ I tell you that out of these stones God can raise up children for Abraham. 10 The ax is already at the root of the trees, and every tree that does not produce good fruit will be cut down and thrown into the fire.
11 “I baptize you with water for repentance. But after me comes one who is more powerful than I, whose sandals I am not worthy to carry. He will baptize you with the Holy Spirit and fire.”
John is referring to Jesus who soon after this came to John to be baptized. The Pharisees and Sadducees were students of the Law, but their fire had gone out. They were not producing “good fruit”, the fruit of the Holy Spirit.
I must be faithful to feed the spiritual fire within me through reading God’s Word, hearing Biblical teaching, and listening to the Holy Spirit within me. Only then will I have something of value to share with my children and grandchildren and other individuals in my life.
Feeding on the Word of God will keep my fire burning!
PS – Last year I had the special priveledge of speaking at the Women’s Retreat “Follow Him 2013”. I was so blessed by the wonderful ladies who came ready to hear God speak as He challenged us in our desire to Follow Him. Those of you who read this blog and live in Jackson County may be interested in attending this year’s retreat – “Serve Him 2014”. I have been invited to speak again and I have been convicted by what the Lord has given me to share. It is something I know God wants me to work on – so I have sensed the “fire burning.” If you would like more information – please contact Kandi Newkirk or Lorraine Arnold at 586-6008. The dates are Friday evening March 14th through Sunday morning March 16th and the location is the Hemlock Hills Gatlinburg Resort, Gatlinburg, Tenn.