August 6 – Fire

There’s a grace when the heart is under fire
Another way when the walls are closing in

– Hillsong United, Another in the Fire

Prescribed burns are implemented for a healthy ecosystem. It is the idea of intentionally burning off what isn’t useful in order to make room for new growth. Crews will take the specific precautions, plan down to the last detail what needs to burn and where. Burns are carefully isolated to one area and are fully controlled. Many times, biologists oversee these projects to determine correct plant life and what the new flora will look like when regrowth happens.
Fire is an element that kills whatever is in its tracks. We prevent forest fires, criminalize arson, and protect our homes with smoke detectors. We are prepared for an unexpected fire. But what if there is something to be said about burning intentionally? This analogy allows us to see fire as a means of renewing. As a biologist sets fire to the forest floor, perhaps there are things inside us that could go. For example: negative mindsets, poor perspectives, unhealthy hobbies, addictions, a sour worldview, to pick a few. There are things in our souls that could be burned off in order to make room for new seeds of change. 

….provide for those who grieve in Zion—
to bestow on them a crown of beauty
    instead of ashes,
the oil of joy
    instead of mourning,
and a garment of praise
    instead of a spirit of despair.
They will be called oaks of righteousness,
    a planting of the Lord
    for the display of his splendour. – Isaiah 61:3 (NIV)

The bible symbolizes fire as purification, including the power and zeal of God. Both with the element of destroying and cleansing.
Yet, not out of our own strength can these changes be made, but out of the planting of the Holy Spirit.

Similarly, fire is hot, and it is both positive and negative. It symbolizes both refining and purifying, on the one hand, and death and destruction on the other. – Forerunner Commentary

The character of God is described as a holy fire. Burning that within us that has no use to us anymore. Fire symbolizes God’s radiant glory as an aspect of His holiness.

“For the LORD thy God is a consuming fire, even a jealous God.”
– Deuteronomy 4:24 (KJV)

Light up the fire of love inside and blaze the thoughts away. – Rumi

God desires to free us from that which holds us back in our lives. Things that aren’t serving us. Intentionally burning welcomes change and rebirth.

So let’s burn off anything that has no use to us. Embrace a holy fire. Turn ashes to beauty and grow again. 

Grow up and grow within. 

Because in our fires He is always fanning our flame. 
To become and to change, to be increasingly like Christ.

Further Reading:

“You groped your way through that murk once, but no longer. You’re out in the open now. The bright light of Christ makes your way plain. So no more stumbling around. Get on with it! The good, the right, the true—these are the actions appropriate for daylight hours. Figure out what will please Christ, and then do it.”

“Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a great cloud of witnesses, let us throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles. And let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us..” – Hebrews 12:1 (NIV)

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