Storms and fires.

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1Storms and fires

It’s popular in Christian circles to refer to life’s trials and hardships as storms.  We talk about them.  Sing songs about them.  And I can understand why the expression resonates with us.  Storms are somewhat violent, intimidating, chaotic, and overpowering.  But is that accurate?  Are there storms?

What about fire?  Still Biblical.  Aside from the flood (which I don’t think relates to how Christian’s describe life’s storms) there is one difference.

God uses fire

Burning bush (Exodus 3).  Pillar leading Israelites (Exodus 13).  Elijah (1 Kings 18).  Pentecost (Acts 2).  Lake of fire (Revelation 20), am I missing some more?  Moreover, God is actually described as fire (Deuteronomy 4).

Fire is more than just some arbitrary dynamic element to the story.  It is God.  Do you see where I’m heading?

Okay, what if we stopped calling our trials and hardships storms and started calling them fires?  What would that mean?  How would that change things?  Oh, it would change everything!  It would completely upend our attitude and alter our story from being all about us to all about God.  And isn’t that the point?

It’s about focusing on the process and not the problem.  It’s refinement.  Just like the process of refining precious metals.  Putting them to the fire, skimming off the impurities that rise to the surface, and making them more valuable in the end (that song Refiner’s Fire keeps playing in my head #timewarp #helpme).  The Bible says that when our faith is tested, we need to persevere (James 1).  Our perseverance produces character.  And our character strengthens our faith (Romans 5).  God uses fire to build our faith.  Pretty awesome process.  Almost like it was made to work that way.  

I’m voting that the word “storm” be removed from the Christians Dictionary and replaced with something more accurate, and hot, and fiery…

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