A World in Pain
Pain is ravaging our world like torrents of fire ripping through a forest.
During a forest fire, tongues of fire rip through and burn everything in their path. Nothing is left untouched by it. Fire consumes until everything is laid bare, or it is doused with water and all that remains is ash.
Pain, like the forest fire, can turn your heart and soul into a pile of white ash.
When situations come into our lives and the spark of pain ignites a blazing wild fire, only Living Water can squelch the blaze that rips through and torments your heart. It seems like nothing but God's Word can go deep enough to blanket the inferno in the human heart.
"Even though I walk through the darkest valley, I will fear no evil, for you are with me; your rod and your staff, they comfort me." ~Psalm 23:4
"The LORD is a refuge for the oppressed, a stronghold in times of trouble. Those who know your name trust in you, for you, LORD, have never forsaken those who seek you." ~Psalm 9:9-10
Pain can only go so far. If we belong to Christ, it cannot devour us.
"Therefore let all the faithful pray to you while you may be found: surely the rising of mighty waters will not reach them. You are my hiding place; you will protect me from trouble and surround me with songs of deliverance." ~ Psalm 32:6-7
Once a forest fire has finished ripping through the land, something amazing happens Here is the beauty of what happens afterwards...
The thick overgrowth of the forest floor is cleared out, now more sunlight can shine down on it.
Old invasive weeds are burned off and this encourages the growth of new species.
Wildflowers begin to bloom abundantly because the nutrients from the burned vegetation continue to leach into the soil and fuel it.
It becomes a home of more diverse species of animals because remnants of the burned trees offer attractive habitat to birds and small mammals.
After the furry of pain has done it's damage in our heart and all that remains is ash, the healing can begin!
Isaiah 61 prophesies Jesus' kingdom. It talks about how He replaces the ash heap with a crown of beauty and the oil of joy.
"The Spirit of the LORD is on me, because the LORD has appointed me to proclaim good news to the poor. He has sent me to bind up the brokenhearted, to proclaim freedom for the captives and release from darkness for the prisoners, to proclaim the year of the LORD's favor and the day of vengeance of our God, to comfort all who mourn, and provide for those who grieve in Zion- to bestow on them on a crown of beauty instead of ashes, the oil of joy instead of mourning, and a garment of praise instead of a spirit of despair." ~Isaiah 61:1-3
I remember as a young girl when a wild fire swept across the fields of green behind our home on Otter Lake Road. I remember seeing the billows of dark smoke and feeling afraid. I feared that the fire would come and consume me, my family and our sweet little home. My mom comforted and reassured me that this would not happen because the fire department was there and they were getting it under control. In the days that followed I walked deep beyond the Tamarack trees to see what was left of the fields of green that I loved so. All I could see was a field of black with small piles of smoldering ash scattered here and there. I was heartbroken. Several days passed and again I went back to see what had transpired. To my shock, there were now beautiful green sprouts of new life everywhere! It happened so quickly. I had never seen such green growth set above the jet black soil. It was such an incredible sight to see. Soon after that, wildflowers of purple blanketed the ground. I will never forget the feeling of hope that sprang up in my heart watching all of this unfold. I had the privilege of watching the transition of fire and smoke turn into a field of beauty and it was breathtaking. The images made a lasting impression on me and they have never left me.
Maybe after the wildfires of corruption across this world finish burning out, we will become like the forest floor. After the fires of pandemic and war have burned, maybe we will be forever changed. May these fires of adversity burn off the invasive weeds of pride, greed and selfishness from our souls and allow more Son Light to reach our hearts to produce wildflowers of love, forgiveness, grace, humility and generosity.
"May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace as you trust in him, so that you may overflow with hope by the power of the Holy Spirit." ~Romans 15:13
Heavenly Father, We lift our hearts from this broken world and give You praise. Hallowed be thy name! Hold us as the torrents of fiery pain rage across this world. Show each of us our calling and position. Keep our hearts holy and pure; kept for You and Your service. Protect us. Shield us. Use us! Thy Kingdom Come! In Jesus Name