THE HEROES JOURNEY?
THE LOVE OF ANYTHING WORTHY WILL TAKE US INTO THE FIRE, AND MUST BE PURSUED WITH FIRE.
“And he led the flock to the back of the desert, and came to Horeb, the mountain of God. And the Angel of the Lord appeared to him in a flame of fire from the midst of a bush.” (Excerpts from Ex. 3:1-2)
A flame of fire? The mountain of God? Am I a flame of fire? How do I feed the sacred fire bringing meaning to each life? How can I live without fire? How can I live without passion, purpose, love, meaning, joy, and flame? God’s Word reveals it to be a life not worth living. Man’s own experiences eventually proves God’s Word absolutely correct. We must have fire! Or we become robots going through endless motions, repeated circles until we die, the point of Ecclesiastes.
For the follower of Christ it is essential, we cannot live without it, we are drawn to His flame. This thing was birthed in fire on the day of Pentecost, and the old testament Priesthood were commanded to never let the fire on the altar go out! (There will be more on that in coming articles.)
Whatever the passion may be in your life, that flame is sacred to you, but is it sacred to God? Whatever the love is in your life, is holy to you, but is it holy to God? We worship our passions. We sacrifice to them. We do not truly live without them. However, do you see the difference between the sacrifices a man will make in a strip club, as women stoke his flame of lust and he gladly tucks his hard earned money into forbidden places, compared to the sacrifices of a righteous man unto the cross of Christ? Two flames. Both sacred to the one who loves it, but only one is holy in the eyes of God, the other is stoked by the flames of hell!
We will talk of flames of heaven too. We cannot truly live without fire. God invites us to a heroes journey, a life of fire, love, and passion! Consider these words from a poem by T.S. Eliot, “Little Gidding”.
The dove descending breaks the air / With flame of incandescent terror / Of which the tongues declare /
The one discharge from sin and error / The only hope, or else despair /
Lies in the choice of pyre or pyre…
To be redeemed from fire by fire.
Dictionary definition of “Pyre” is: A combustible heap for burning a dead body as a funeral rite. (You might want to read the above verse again.) To be redeemed from fire by fire? What is being said here?
Who then devised the torment? Love. / Love is the unfamiliar Name /
Behind the hands that wove / The intolerable shirt of flame / Which human power cannot remove. /
We only live, only suspire / Consumed by either fire or fire.
The more I have read the above poem, the more meaning that has spoken to me. We are called to a FIRE! Consumed by sin or grace! Two flames burn in this earth! Of which are you? Love is the unfamiliar “Name”. Notice the “N” is capitalized. Meaning God.
And then there are those most wretched of souls who have no fire burning. They live flameless lives of depression and defeat. They are most miserable of all. Just going through the motions of life. No energy or drive because there is no fire! And their lives give no light!
I have much more to say on this subject. I want to feed the flame! Broken wings that soar! Let us mount up with the wings of the eagle!
The love of anything worthy will take us into the fire and must be pursued with fire!
(The quotes in this article, other than scripture, are from a book entitled: “Teaching with Fire”. My Bible, and this book has been useful to me in preparing for this series of articles.) Hope you enjoy. I will write what feeds my flame and I hope it will feed yours too. We need more of God’s fire in this earth today. This is one little way I have to help stoke His holy fire. More to come.