Are you Alive.

I wrote this 9-10 months ago at a conference in Nashville.  Thought I would share it-

David Crowder has a song that starts off with the lines “And he set me on fire, and I’m burning alive” I had never heard this song before about a week ago when I was in Nashville for a conference and David Crowder and his band was actually there.  As I watched and listened to this song, my friend Jon started telling me how he loves the first verse—mostly because he almost never feels that way.  I agree fully.  How many times am I at a place where I feel so overcome with God, so caught up by his presence that I can say that “I am burning alive”?  It seems that I find myself in the corner opposite a furnace, legs curled to my chest, with my head pulled to my knees.  Am I hiding under a blanket? Enjoying the cold, enjoying the light of a lighter as it is safer than the bright piercing light from the flames.   Through this blanket, I can see a faint light and feel a faint warmth, but many times I stay in the corner—close enough to feel some of the heat, and see some of the light, but far enough away that I will not get burned.  Far enough away that I can still walk away if I need to.  There have been times where I have been close enough to the fire and have intentioned to jump into it and be as close as I can to God, but those intentions get pulled back, just as if I was doing one of those carnival games where they attach a bungee cord to a harness and you run with that harness on as far as you can until you hit a point and it snaps you back.  My desire to let God engulf me with his spirit gets pulled back by my doubts and worldly desires and “what if’s”. 

What if God makes me give all my money away? 
What if this fire is not God?
Is God really there?  Is he real?
What if God sends me to Africa for the rest of my life?
What if God makes me live in poverty?

These doubts and questions pull me back from the flames, they pull me away from God until I am no longer standing on the brick ornation of a deep fireplace, but instead I am once again in the corner.  Close enough to be warm.  Close enough to see light.  Distance enough to be safe.

But what if I was different?  What if I actually jumped into the flames and allowed the flames of God to consume me to the point that I was not longer the same person.   Fire can do some horrible things to people; someone who has been through an accident or a fire many times will never be the same or look the same again.  Spiritually I want to be that way.  I want God to change me; I want God to make me into a completely different person.  This has its cost.  I must let my old self die; I must let it be completely wiped away.  This is risky.  Everything changes.  You no longer are living for this world or for your own self.  That part of you is gone!  Instead you are living for the purpose of the kingdom. 

Following God is risky.  Following God is not by any means safe.  But what else is there?

Published in: on September 2, 2009 at 9:45 pm  Comments (1)  

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  1. yeah man. it’s not easy to follow something that seems ludicris or crazy. And when others tell you that it is so, it’s even harder. There are times in my life when I point back to and recognize the God of the universe clearly leading my life in different ways that seemed absolutely crazy at the time but looking back there was such clear direction for it.

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