Keep the Flame Burning Bright

By Sandy Kirby Quandt

One of the things I learned to do well while I was in Girl Scouts was build a fire. Whenever Pilot and I went camping, he put up the tent, and did most everything else, and I was in charge of building the fire. My favorite type, and the one I have the most success building, is the tepee.

For any type of fire, you need tinder. Something that flares up when you touch it with the flame from a burning match. That could be dead bark chips, dead twigs, pine straw, dry leaves.

Once you gather your tinder, you need kindling. Kindling catches the flame from the tinder. Kindling can be dead sticks or small branches that snap in two. As the saying goes, “If you can’t snap it, scrap it.”

Next comes the fuel. This is where you get the larger dead branches about a foot long.

For the tepee fire, you place a large handful of tinder on the ground, preferably in a fire pit. Lean a circle of kindling sticks around the tinder. The tips of the sticks should meet at the top like poles on a Native American tepee.

With your back to the wind, light the tinder. After the kindling is blazing, feed the fire with your fuel sticks. Start with thin pieces at first, then add thicker pieces. Continue feeding the fire until it is the size you want.

Now that you know how I make a fire, let me explain how I see this apply to our lives.

As Believers in Christ Jesus, we start out as tinder. We’ve turned our back to the world and allowed Jesus’ word to start a spark inside us. We flare up when we’re touched by the Word of God through his Holy Spirit.

But if we don’t add kindling to take us to the next step, and allow all the dead stuff we carry around inside to be destroyed through Jesus’ refining fire, our flame’s gonna’ die out. We need to study the Bible. We need to surround ourselves with the right kind of friends. We need to support one another through prayer. We need to apply what we’re learning, to take our spark to the next level.

But we can’t stop with tossing a couple scripture verses or prayers on our fire. We need to add solid fuel that comes from digging deeper into the Bible. Without constantly feeding the flames with thicker branches, the fire’s gonna’ sputter and turn cold.

At some point, we need to step up and become the fuel, the spark, the flame, for others that will help feed their fire.

What do you think? Any campfire experts out there? Is it time for us to build a fire?

I’d love to hear your thoughts on the subject. Leave a comment below. If you think others would appreciate reading this, please share it through the social media buttons.

 Don’t hide your light! Let it shine for all; let your good deeds glow for all to see, so that they will praise your heavenly Father. Matthew 5:15-16 (TLB)

I wish you well.


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