The dark side to wood heat is the task of keeping the fire going. At least three days a week I am the first one up—sometimes by hours. So, it’s my job to rekindle the fire. Let me tell you, it is not always an easy thing to do! Take this morning for instance. To get the fire going meant I had to get up out of my warm bed. When it’s 24* outside…it is hard to force my body out of my warm, memory foam, puppy cuddly bed!
Once I got myself up, suffered through letting the dog out the frigid sunroom door, and adjusted my eyes, I started on the fire. I opened the iron cast doors. Inside was darkness other than a few remaining glowing embers. I took the pokey thingy (it has a technical term, I’m sure) and pushed the hot coals together in a little pile. I grabbed the leather wood bag and made my way to the (again, frigid) garage to load up several logs.
My friend is kind enough to supply us with her old newspapers, so I wadded them up and laid them on the hot coals. Then I placed the wood in, stacking it carefully to allow “breathing room” for the flames. Next—well—next I crossed my fingers hoping the fire magic would happen. I left the door slightly open and the vents fully open. Knowing that was all I could do for the moment, I went on to my next most important task of the morning—making coffee.
I spent 45 minutes stoking the fire…constantly babysitting it. I used the bellow to coax the flames. I moved the wood to adjust the positioning. A fire that has gone out takes tending. It takes work. It takes patience (I’m not naturally very patient—just saying). Some days it can literally take a couple of hours to really getting the fire going.
Here is the cool thing. Once I get the fire going…it’s pretty simple to keep it burning hot and strong continuously. All it takes is a conscious effort to maintain it. Every so often, more wood needs to be added to the fire. If I am consistent with my attention to the life of the fire, it continues to burn. It’s important to not let the fire burn down too much, or the process has to begin all over again. (Ugh)
My walk with Christ is a lot like the fire in my woodstove. Being a Christian is more than just giving your life over to Christ. It’s more than that one day when you ask forgiveness. I mean, that is HUGE, don’t get me wrong! All of Heaven rejoices when one of us accepts Jesus as our Savior. But, it continues. That relationship (and it is a relationship) has to be stoked. It has to be tended. It has to be fed.
Christ is the “fire” that burns within me. But, what happens if I don’t work on my relationship with Him? Just like the fire in my woodstove, over time, the flames burn out. There may still be little pieces of me that are still “warm”, but it will take so much work to build my relationship back up to the place where I am burning with love and the desire to be closer to my Lord.
How much easier is it to be in constant communion with Him? You know, He loves to talk to me. Throughout the day I can thank Him for His goodness AND ask for His help with my troubles.
When I read the Bible, it feeds my soul the truths I need to make it through the difficult journey we call “life”. When I surround myself with other believers it encourages me…feeds the flame of my love for Him.
They asked each other, “Were not our hearts burning within us while he talked with us on the road and opened the Scriptures to us?” Luke 24:32
Maybe you once had a fire burning in your heart—a love for Christ—but you’ve allowed “life” to put the flames out. You know what? I’ve been there! It doesn’t mean all hope is lost. It doesn’t mean Christ won’t have you or that it’s too “late” for you. It just means…you have some work ahead of you. 🙂
The really good news is, you don’t have to do the work alone. Jesus loves you so much. If you let Him, He will take your burdens and carry them for you. It’s so easy to talk to Him. Just—talk. He already knows your thoughts anyway. So, go ahead, share them! Ask Him to bring you closer to Him, to reveal His amazing love for you.
Well, I better go check on my fire. 🙂
(Do you want to know Jesus as your Savior? Click the links to find out how, or feel free to reach out to me!)
Lisa Bull sees her life as a journey along God’s divine plan. While considering herself an expert on nothing, she enjoys laughing and has made “choosing joy” her motto. Lisa has experienced God’s unfailing love and grace in her life and wants nothing more than for others to enjoy that same gift in their lives.
Lisa is the daughter and granddaughter of ministers. She has multiple relatives in ministry on both sides of her father’s family including several pastors, pastor’s wives, and missionaries. In fact, ministry in her maternal grandmother’s family can be traced back several generations. She loves being a wife and mother of two terrific young men.