Monday, September 7, 2009

Have you burnt out?

I have a story I’d like to share with you:

One chilly autumn night, a pastor knocked on the door of a member of his congregation. This man had once been an active participant at the church but no longer attended regularly. He’d show up every few weeks, listen to the message and then leave quickly afterwards not making time to socialize with the other church members. He was a bit of a quiet man but his gradual withdrawal from the church and its members hadn’t gone unnoticed by the pastor. The man welcomed the pastor in, took his coat and the two men sat down by the fireplace. Without saying a word the pastor leaned over and picked up the fireplace tongs. He used them to pick a burning ember out of the flames and placed it just outside the reach of the fire. The two men sat silently while the flames of the fire danced, popped and crackled as the ember was fading. Moments later there was no sign of a flame in the ember at all, it had burnt out completely. The pastor picked up the tongs once again and moved the ember back into the fire. Instantly the ember caught a spark and it began to glow again as it took its part in the dance of flames. The pastor walked to the door, gathered his coat, then turned to the man and said, “So, I’ll see you on Sunday?” The man replied with a knowing smile, “Yep, you’ll see me Sunday!”

This week I have heard the heart of numerous friends who have become just like the ember. Fortunately, they have recognized the issue before their fire has died out but as we read in the story; even if your fire has died it’s never too late to rekindle it! When we are in community with other believers, we have life! When we keep to ourselves and exclude ourselves from the things going on around us, we perish! We are relational creatures; we’re designed to be in relationship with others. And when we are in relationships with people who are seeking God in their lives and living according to His plan, that’s when we thrive!! We don’t need for the people in our life to fill our time; we need the people in lives to fill our cup. We have an innate need to serve and be served, encourage and be encouraged, love and be loved as we ‘do life’ with one another. No matter if you’re an introvert or an extrovert, single or married, a corporate executive or unemployed, versed in the Bible or just learning God’s word – you have a place in God’s family and you are welcome there! Join the dance of the flames and watch as God makes your flame burn brightly for Him!

Be blessed,
Jennifer

“Now you are the body of Christ, and each one of you is a part of it.” 1Corinthians 12:27

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