Have you ever gone camping? If so, no doubt you’ve built a campfire. There’s a certain amount of knowledge required to build a great campfire. My son learned how when he was in the cub scouts. You need to have the right materials and the right conditions to build a great roaring campfire. First you need to determine whether the area you are camping in is experiencing a draught, if the danger of wildfire is high then you should never build a campfire, one simple spark can start a raging wildfire that destroys everything around it. Start with plain earth, or build your fire in a fire pit. The materials you need to have are tinder, kindling, and wood. Tinder, like dry leaves, dry grass, or the bark from a tree, burns quickly and helps to ignite the other components. Next comes kindling, smaller twigs and branches, since big logs will smother out your intended fire. Fire consumes oxygen and sometimes when you are getting the fire going you have to gently blow on the fire so that it spreads. If you don’t get the oxygen in there your flames will die out. I’ve heard the phrase “fanning the flames,” and it sort of applies to fire building. After your tinder and kindling catches it will spread to the logs. And once you get the fire going, you have to keep adding the logs to keep it going. You have to invest the right balance of components, attention, and determination to make the perfect campfire, and you must continue to tend to the fire if you want it to keep burning.
I find a lot of similarities in starting and tending a campfire in starting, building, and maintaining our relationships with those we love. It takes considerable effort for two people in a relationship to keep and maintain the spark that set off a wonderful partnership and marriage. And if you don’t blow on the baby flames in the beginning, the fire between the two of you will never catch. Similarly, once the fire and passion of your relationship is ignited, you must continue to fan the flames to keep it actively burning within you. And you must continue to feed the fire between the two of you. If you don’t, your love will change into embers, that will glow hot for a while, but will also die out with time.
Likewise, we need to do the same with our relationship with God. We need to remember our passion that we had for the Lord in the beginning of our relationship, for if we don’t feed the fire and fan the flames, it will die out. Remain in the Word, give God your attention, talk with God through prayer, and build on relationships with other godly Christians. God will do His part, and your part is fairly simple.
Fan those flames dear sisters in Christ!
For this reason I remind you to fan into flame the gift of God, which is in you through the laying on of my hands, (2 Timothy 1:6, ESV)