Fresh Hope – 6th November 2017

2 Timothy 1:6-7 For this reason I remind you to fan into flame the gift of God, which is in you through the laying on of my hands. For the Spirit God gave us does not make us timid, but gives us power, love and self-discipline.

Friday night in our house is usually date night!

It’s a practice that we have held onto for the 33 years of our married life together and it works. Spending one night a week together over a romantic meal, usually at home, means that we get to stay connected and that our love for each other is kept alive.

As the winter draws on, so does the need for the wood burner to be lit, and although Gillian is okay at lighting it, there are a few things in life that make a man feel more manly, one of which is lighting a fire. I know what you’re thinking, but apparently it’s the ‘hunter’ instinct that we possess!

On Friday night, I lit the fire and retreated to the kitchen to conjure up something special for our meal, leaving Gillian to enjoy TV in the lounge.

Admittedly I was gone quite a time, but when I eventually went back in to inform her that the meal was almost ready, I found her surrounded with smoke as she was desperately trying to relight the fire that was now just a pile of smouldering ashes.

After a few choice words with her about my man fire, I couldn’t help but mention the fact that she had only one thing to do, alongside watching TV, and that was to keep an eye on the fire. She made several excuses but none of them valid. She had got so engrossed and focused on her relaxation that she had overlooked the fact that you have to tend to a fire to keep it going. I asked her why she hadn’t noticed it, but she seemed to be totally oblivious.

That episode between us, helps us all to gain perspective on our lives, when it comes to keeping alive the gift that God has given you. How many of us have become so consumed with our own agendas, that we fail to see a once burning fire now just giving off a load of smoke, something that neither gives heat or light and leaves you with a dirty pile of ash?

As we start this week, I wonder if I can challenge you as I challenge myself to ask, where has that fire and passion within you gone?

As Paul in the Bible wrote those words above, he recognised how easy it was to allow the passion for the things of God to start to grow cold; but he also gave us that age old practice of how to get it going again, and that is to ‘fan it into flame’.

All I had to do on Friday, in order to rescue the fire, was to open the door on the log burner and allow more air to get it going again.

Just because things have been burning low of late, don’t let that be the end of it. Simply open the door of your heart and allow the presence of the Holy Spirit to breathe on you once more. Be open to what God wants to do with your life today and instead of being so preoccupied with your own pleasure, start to delight in giving God His rightful place once more.

The gift of God is in you.

Don’t let it go dormant because you couldn’t be bothered to take care of it.

There’s a fire and passion on the inside of every follower of Jesus… if only you’d recognise it.

Be careful not to lose it, just because you weren’t careful to use it.

Pastor Mark

A daily devotion for a better way of living.