This is an excerpt from January 5th’s CMT eNews. CMT eNews is now hosted online at: ChildrensMinistryToday.com
Over the past several weeks, the weather has been cold enough for Alisa and I to enjoy the warmth and coziness of a crackling fire in our fireplace. For me, there is such a wonderful sense of comfort and security when we have the opportunity to share a fire in the fireplace together.
If you know much about starting a good fire, then you know that seasoned wood makes all of the difference. Not too long ago I picked up some wood that had not been seasoned or dried out. It was terribly difficult to get burning and once it was burning it took quite a bit of extra kindling to keep it going.
This analogy came to me as I thought about the difference between this freshly cut wood and seasoned wood. If I wish to withstand the fires that come against me in my life and ministry, then I must remain filled with life, the life of Christ. Should I allow myself to dry out, it will become much easier for me to be overcome with flames of distraction, discouragement, and defeat.
All of us experience difficult moments. All of us go through trials, tests, and tribulations. There is one thing that will determine how you come out on the other side or your tests. That one thing can be determined by you answering this question. “Are you abiding in Christ and the Word?”
The more you know Christ, the more you should desire to know Him. The more of His life that is in you, the more of His life you should be striving to obtain. If more of your day is consumed with worry, distraction, and the cares of life than with your Savior, your spiritual life will be well on its way to dryness; you increase your chances of becoming good firewood for the trials of life and spiritual attacks.
Allow me to put this straightforward to you. Stir up within you the strongest desire ever to be closer to your Lord and Savior. Make yourself, if necessary, get into the Word of God. Discipline yourself to be in prayer with your Heavenly Father. Fall in love with Jesus. Come back to your first love! As you do, those things which have been burdensome will become lighter. The challenges in your life will be more easily overcome. The Word of God will flow more powerfully from your life.
If you are going to follow the example of so many others during this time of year and make a resolution, then make one that will change your life and the lives of all who know you. Resolve to walk more closely with your Creator. It will fireproof both your life and ministry.
Rev. Gary R. Linn
Children’s Ministry Today