The Beautiful Bride - Week 3, Day 3

Set the World on Fire 

IF…Paul reminded Timothy “to fan into flames the spiritual gift God gave you…For God has not given us a spirit of fear and timidity, but of power, love, and self-discipline.  2 Timothy 1:6a, 7 (NLT) 

THEN…I will do everything I can to ignite the Holy Spirit within me so that I can make a difference in the world for the Kingdom of God. I will not be afraid because God has given me power, love, and self-discipline to do what he has called me to do. 

Tomorrow we will look at several passages of Scripture that discuss the specific gifts that the Holy Spirit gives, but today I want to focus on how God’s Spirit grows inside of us. The Bible often associates the Holy Spirit with fire.  In the above verse, Paul encourages Timothy to“… fan into flames the spiritual gift God gave you…” which is manifest in “power, love, and self-discipline.”  Paul also warns the Thessalonians not to “quench the Spirit” (1 Thessalonians 5:19). In other words, we are responsible for nurturing and feeding God’s Spirit inside of us. 

Think for a moment about Paul’s word picture of producing flames.  Every flame starts with a spark. A spark is not very big and it is not very strong, but it can grow into something HUGE! When I was a teenager, we did not have electric heat in our home, so when it got cold outside, we had to build a fire. I learned from a young age that this is a gradual process; you cannot put a big log on a match and expect it to catch on fire.  It takes time, attention, and patience.

The steps for building a fire:

  1. Loosely wad up paper and light the edge with a match. 
  2. Add pine needles
  3. Add pine cones and small twigs
  4. Add small branches and medium branches
  5. Add small logs
  6. Add large logs
  7. Don’t let the fire go out, or you will need to repeat all of the above steps!

(Use dry materials. If during the first stages it appears that the fire is only producing smoke, lean in and gently blow at the base of the pile until the embers begin to shine and ignite. “Fan the Flame!”)

Paul says that a similar process is employed as we cultivate the power and love of the Holy Spirit in us. A spark can easily be rendered useless, but if we fan it into flames, it can have great power and effect.  The Holy Spirit grows within us as we submit to his authority and invest time in God’s Word, Prayer and Fellowship with other believers.  When we neglect these things, God’s Spirit is quenched and He becomes negligible in our lives. Imagine your “flame” making a difference in the Kingdom of God.  The more that you cultivate and fan it, the stronger it will become and the more influence you will have for eternity.  If Jesus is the LIGHT of the world and you are His LIGHT bearer, at what stage of Kingdom impact is your flame?

  1. Candle: provides light and a little heat for you.
  2. Fireplace: provides light and heat for your family.
  3. Bonfire: provides light and heat for your community.
  4. Forest Fire: Provides light and heat that is unstoppable. 

How can you be more intentional about fanning the flame of the Holy Spirit so that the Light of God shines more brightly in and through your life? 

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