While studying to teach the Sunday School Lesson tomorrow, I came across this :
A bundle of small twigs can start an enormous fire. But left alone, a blazing ember from the fire will quickly burn out. The same can be said for us as Christians. In order to experience authentic community hearts and minds must come together-we cannot go it alone. When we come together we need to stir the embers, adding to the warmth of our community.
I want to be a part of stirring the embers so that I may experience this true community, togetherness with other believers. I don't want to feel like we are going it alone. Instead I want to be a part of something bigger than me, something only God can stir up in me and others around me.
So How do we fan the flames or stir the embers to experience this true community? I think Romans 12 is a pretty good example!
Romans 12: 9-21 (Message Version)
9-10 Love from the center of who you are; don’t fake it. Run for dear life from evil; hold on for dear life to good. Be good friends who love deeply; practice playing second fiddle.
I so want to be more like this Love deeply and put others needs above my own, I don't do this enough!
11-13 Don’t burn out; keep yourselves fueled and aflame. Be alert servants of the Master, cheerfully expectant. Don’t quit in hard times; pray all the harder. Help needy Christians; be inventive in hospitality.
Being in the word each day is one way I can keep myself fueled and aflame. I fail at this, then wonder where is God, why isn't He keeping the fire going when it's me who has doused the flame.
14-16 Bless your enemies; no cursing under your breath. Laugh with your happy friends when they’re happy; share tears when they’re down. Get along with each other; don’t be stuck-up. Make friends with nobodies; don’t be the great somebody.
17-19 Don’t hit back; discover beauty in everyone. If you've got it in you, get along with everybody. Don’t insist on getting even; that’s not for you to do. “I’ll do the judging,” says God. “I’ll take care of it.”
Don't hit back! (wow, needed that conviction!) I think it's somewhat human to "hit back" especially when we feel we have done nothing wrong to deserve being "hit" or treated in an unfair way. I do try to see the beauty in each person, trying to remember that each of us was created in God's image His likeness and when I am not seeing the beauty in that then I need to get my eyes checked. (Usually its a heart check that I need)
20-21 Our Scriptures tell us that if you see your enemy hungry, go buy that person lunch, or if he’s thirsty, get him a drink. Your generosity will surprise him with goodness. Don’t let evil get the best of you; get the best of evil by doing good.
Doing good even when it's hard, or maybe especially when it's hardest would be the better way to say this.
I know God's not through with me yet, so I need to keep my eye's alert for Hid beauty in each person I come in contact with , I need to dig into His word so that I may know and grow in Him more, and I need to allow Him complete control over my life. Until I can do this I am like the ember that just burns out. I wan to be more than that burning out ember. I want to be a part of something bigger, a raging fire burning for the Lord. SO that's my prayer tonight that whatever God has for us, where ever He sends us that we will be more than a spark/ember that burns on our own and burns out but a part of a raging fire shining God's light, love for the world to see.