Life Verses, part three

Today I look at my final life verse. I’m sure I’ll pick up more life verses as I continue to grow deeper in my faith and learn more about God, but for now this is the most recent one that has entered into my life. This one dates back about a month, when somehow God pulled me even deeper into a lifestyle of worship. Worship music is my favorite thing, playing it and listening to it, I just get so lost in worshiping God. Yet somehow God showed me a new level of worship, just this way of coming even deeper into it, and honestly I’ve been sort of crazy overwhelmed (in a good way) ever since.

Here’s the verse, and then I’ll talk more about it. This is out of the Amplified Bible.

Leviticus 6:13 The fire shall be burning continually on the altar; it shall not [be allowed to] go out.

Now yes, this was written about an actual altar and an actual fire, but it has come to me in a more symbolic way. The fire that it speaks of is our burning for God, just that flame that He ignites inside of us. And the altar is our hearts.

For believers, the concept of fire and burning for God are very common. If you’ve never felt His presence sort of burning inside of you it probably sounds a little insane. Phrases like “come and consume me God” and “burn like a fire in me” make us sound like we’re wishing for death, but it’s really just a cry to have more of Him.

The concept of a continually burning fire really connects to the idea of not losing your way. My life for so long was just completely spiritually extinguished. It was dark, it was cold, there wasn’t any real passion to any of it. Sometimes I tried to find my way, but I was stumbling around in the dark. You know, there are times when I can barely stand to really think back on those days, it threatens to overtake me and just make me feel consumed with shame and sadness. The fact that I once had that fire, that I felt it burning, felt its goodness, and yet let my life go in a direction that allowed the fire to go out, ugh, I hate it, man. I seriously hate it.

But I don’t dwell on where I was, because where I am is simply too good. There’s a fire in me now that feels infinite. I’m not claiming to always be up, I still have down days, but that fire is always burning.

The reason this verse really means a lot to me is because it reminds me not only of the importance of keeping your fire for God going, but it’s a reminder that fires will burn themselves out if we don’t tend to them. An untended fire is nothing but embers and ash before too long. To keep that fire of God burning inside of us we have to keep returning to the source of the flames. His power, His spirit dwelling inside of us, that’s what keeps us lit up. You get more of that through prayer, you get more of that through worship, you get more of that through church, you get more of that through giving and going above and beyond for others.

One of the great mistakes we all make is that we look to people to light up our lives. Some people can set you ablaze in their own special way, but those fires fade. God’s fire is eternal. It is the only one that in the stormy seas still burns, that when you’re down in a pit still burns, that when you’re surrounded on all sides by the enemy still burns. You can be submerged underwater and the fire of God will still burn bright. I truly believe that the only thing that can allow the fire on the altars of our hearts to go out is us allowing it to go out. Awful stuff can happen, I know it can. I discovered yesterday that one of my favorite worship songs (which sings I believe in you, I believe in you, You’re the God of miracles) was written just a few short weeks after the death of the writer’s newborn child. The baby died and they prayed so hard for a miracle, prayed that God would raise it back to life. But they didn’t get their miracle. That’s a moment that’ll test the fire on your altar right there. All these miracles in the Bible, all this power in God’s hands, and He doesn’t use it to save your baby. You better believe that would test you probably more significantly than anything ever had before. But this songwriter and his wife didn’t lose faith. They didn’t allow tragedy to extinguish the fire inside of them. Not only did they push through, but they turned that tragedy into one of the most powerful worship songs ever written, they gave the world an anthem of belief that we can cling to, that we can shout out and use to remind ourselves of who God is.

The fire shall be burning continually. It must. The stakes are simply too high to let it go out, guys. That fire is your power, it’s your passion, the brighter it burns inside of you the brighter you’re going to shine for Jesus. And the brighter you shine, the more people you’re going to draw into God’s presence, the more people you’re going to impact for Him. There’s a lot of extinguished flames walking around in the world. Some of them maybe burned once but let the fire go out, maybe some of them have never had that indescribable fire of God inside of them. How can we help light them up if our own flames are low?

The only way to keep the fire burning is to keep close to the source, to constantly bring more and more of Him into our lives. I never want to be someone who even comes close to letting my fire go out ever again. Those were the darkest days and most unfulfilled days I’ve ever had. Now that I’ve been working hard to tend to this fire, to feed it and to nurture it, the more I’ve drawn close to God, the better my life has been. It’s infinitely better. It’s like being a different creation, one that can’t even relate to the one who walked around with an extinguished fire for all those years. And so yes, as you can see, this life verse is one that I will hold onto for all of my days.

Leviticus 6:13 The fire shall be burning continually on the altar; it shall not [be allowed to] go out.

PRAYER AND CLOSING

Father God, thank you so much for the fire that burns inside of us.  That fire is everything, it’s our life, at least our true life.  Lord, I don’t want to live without the fire ever again, I’d rather die.  Thank you for the power, just this incredible contentment, that warmth and light, it’s almost too much to handle, God.  Thank you that you didn’t leave me extinguished, thank you so much for drawing me back home, for relighting the flame.  Lord, right now I pray over anyone reading this that you make them deeply aware of the importance of keeping their flame alive.  Help them do it, draw them deeper, and with each new level of intensity in that fire show them new levels of your love, greater heights of your goodness.  Burn within us and never ever stop.  In the precious name of Jesus I pray, amen.

I love you guys.  I’m super exhausted so I’m just going to close out by saying that I love you.  Everyone have a wonderful weekend!

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