Echoes From the Campfire

It’s not how good you are with your fists, or with a gun.  It’s what you are inside.  Your loyalty, and your courage.  And your self-respect.”
              –Brad Dennison  (The Long Trail)

    “A good man out of the good treasure of his heart brings forth good; and an evil man out of the evil treasure of his heart brings forth evil.  For out of the abundance of the heart his mouth speaks.”
              –Luke 6:45 (NKJV)
I’m borrowing some from an anecdote that was posted in an newly found, “old” friend’s facebook page.  As many times as I’ve gone camping, sat beside a fire whether in the woods or in a fireplace, this example never came to my mind.  Guess it’s not meant for my “deep” thinking.

         A member of the church, who previously had been attending services regularly, stopped going.  After a few weeks, the pastor decided to visit him.
         It was a chilly evening.  The pastor found the man at home alone, sitting before a blazing fire.  Guessing the reason for his pastor’s visit, the man welcomed him, led him to a comfortable chair near the fireplace and waited.
         The pastor made himself at home but said nothing.  In the grave silence, he contemplated the dance of the flames around the burning logs.  After some minutes, the pastor took the fire tongs, carefully picked up a brightly burning ember and placed it to one side of the hearth all alone then he sat back in his chair, still silent.
         The host watched all this in quiet contemplation.  As the one lone ember’s flame flickered and diminished, there was a momentary glow and then its fire was no more.  Soon it was cold and dead.  Not a word had been spoken since the initial greeting.  The pastor glanced at his watch and realized it was time to leave.  He slowly stood up, picked up the cold, dead ember and placed it back in the middle of the fire.  Immediately it began to glow, once more with the light and warmth of the burning coals around it.
         As the pastor reached the door to leave, his host said with a tear running down his cheek.  “Thank you so much for your visit and especially for the fiery sermon.  I will be back in church next Sunday.”  We live in a world today, which tries to say too much with too little.  Consequently, few listen.  Sometimes the best sermons are the ones left unspoken.

    This “virus” that is among us has become a grand tool for the devil.  Some have awakened to what is happening and have become “hot” for the Lord again.  In the lives of others, however, it has caused them to make an excuse to not get up and go to church.  It has caused them to become fearful, and that, causes them to lose trust in the Lord.  Some say, I go to church online.  Hmmm, maybe so, but you are missing one of the most important things of the church and that is the assembling together of the saints.  That gathering is important, especially in this day, for it helps to cleanse the person from the dirt  that rubs off on them through the day.
    Make this Christmas season one where you receive the blessing of the Lord as well as from loved ones.  Stir up the flame that is in your heart and let the Holy Spirit speak to you during this wonderful time of year.