When we encounter a fire in our life, it is so important to deal with it head on and make sure it is fully extinguished before we go on with life. If not, the risk could be very high as it could cause fatal repercussions in our future. I don't mean fatal necessarily in the sense of life ending with death. It could cause so many more fires to pop up--that could have been prevented--and the next thing we realize we have a massive forest fire in our lives and hearts. If we don't deal with the fire at hand but rather move on, we will find when another fire comes, it will be added to the current. You see the pattern? Fire added to fire added to fire equals a massive consuming fire. That's right, multiple fires in our lives that aren't extinguished will end up consuming us and it could take precious time from our lives spent trying to put out a huge fire instead of little ones along the way.
What happens is when we've not dealt with the fire of our pain, we face another fire and we run from it. We fear the fire in front of us will hurt us like the last one. So, we run from that fire and leave it still burning. That fire spreads to the past fire we've left burning and that is how you get the forest fire in your heart and life. If we would not run from the fire but rather stop and look, we would realize this fire is very small...that of a candle maybe...extinguishable by God's power.
Our best answer is to first face any past fires we have not fully extinguished. Then, when another fire comes, and believe me it WILL, we need to halt, face it with God, and stomp it out. Do not run from the fire! You cannot out run the fire! It will catch up with you so either deal with it now or deal with it when it has quadrupled and ran into other areas of your life.
Even if we feel we are enduring a fire because of someone else's actions, we still must deal with that.
So, I mentioned the dangers and benefits at the beginning and you want to know the benefits. The benefit is that if we are seeking the Lord, God can make good out of any fire. He is the Man! He is the one with the Almighty Fire Extinguisher!! Even with those fires stomped out, with God, you will see new life sprout up in your heart and life. God is everything: the Fire Extinguisher, the Life Giver, the Healer, EVERYTHING!
I'm sure you have all heard of the Refiner's Fire. Now that is one fire you do want to be in and I would even suggest pursuing. The refiner's fire is the fire of God. Malachi 3:3a says: "He will sit as a refiner and purifier of silver."
Bear with me as I'd like to share that story with you. If you've read it before, read it again. It IS my all time favorite email story circulating.
This verse (Malachi 3:3) puzzled some women in a Bible study and they wondered what this statement meant about the character and nature of God. One of the women offered to find out the process of refining silver and get back to the group at their next Bible Study. That week, the woman called a silversmith and made an appointment to watch him at work. She didn't mention anything about the reason for her interest beyond her curiosity about the process of refining silver. As she watched the silversmith, he held a piece of silver over the fire and let it heat up. He explained that in refining silver, one needed to hold the silver in the middle of the fire where the flames were hottest as to burn away all the impurities. The woman thought about God holding us in such a hot spot; then she thought again about the verse that says: "He sits as a refiner and purifier of silver."
She asked the silversmith if it was true that he had to sit there in front of the fire the whole time the silver was being refined. The man answered yes, he not only had to sit there holding the silver, but he had to keep his eyes on the silver the entire time it was in the fire. If the silver was left a moment too long in the flames, it would be destroyed. The woman was silent for a moment. Then she asked the silversmith, "How do you know when the silver is fully refined?" He smiled at her and answered, "Oh, that's easy -- when I see my image in it."
If today you are feeling the heat of the fire, remember that God has His eye on you and will keep watching you until He sees His image in you.
Does that give you Holy bumps or what? Take this to heart.
God will not leave you in the fire one moment too long.
God will not take His eyes off of you the entire time.
God will pull you out when He sees His image in you!!!
Now is your fire worth that? I say Amen. Anything to make us more like Christ!
There the angel of the LORD appeared to him in flames of fire from within a bush. Moses saw that though the bush was on fire it did not burn up. Exodus 3:2