Saturday, November 22, 2008

Fanning the Flame

As I'm sitting here trying to fan this teeny little hot ash into a flame in our fireplace, I am getting frustrated. I have been here for about 45 minutes working to get the remnants of last night's roaring fire to burn brightly again so that I can have some desperately needed warmth on this frigid Saturday before Thanksgiving.

I've tried just about every kind of kindling that I can think of; paper, pine straw, extremely dried out branches and a good dose of prayer with some matches, but nothing is making this fire really ignite. I've blown on that little ash and on the lit pine straw until I am, quite literally, dizzy, but it keeps dying out after only a minute or so.

What in the world am I doing wrong? I am half tempted to just give up and walk away because it seems useless, but my stubbornness won't let me. I know that this little ash is capable of creating a massive fire, and I also know that if my pyro hubby were to walk in here and blow on this same little ash, we would all have to stand back because of the heat.

And then I start to cry.

Not because I am some big wimp who can't take not being able to get a measly fire started (after all there is gasoline in the shed if I really wanted to prove my fire making ability....and don't put it past me). It's because I just cannot escape how this is a perfect analogy of my walk with my Father lately.

It seems that no matter what I do, I can't fan my little ember into a badly needed flame. I'm stale, I'm weary, I'm distracted, I'm overwhelmed, I'm miserable and I'm weak. Among other things. I'm trying to give those over, but I have a tendency to snatch them back and roll in it a little more.

Do I believe I will come up out of this pit? Do I know that my little ash has tons of hope attached to it? You betcha. Remember, I'm stubborn and thankfully, so is my Father's love. I know where He wants me, I just have to get there, one puff of air at a time.






25 comments:

DidiLyn said...

Gayle, stopping now to pray for you.
Psalm 42:5..Why am I so discouraged? Why is my heart so sad? I will put my hope in God! I will praise Him again- my Savior and my God!
Love your heart, sister-friend.
Praying

DidiLyn said...

As I was praying for you, the Lord reminded me that you are the one (gosh I hope I'm remembering that right!) that reccommended Kelly Minter's "No Other God's." Me my my girls are loving it. Thanks!

Andrea said...

You and me both sister!

Andrea said...

You and me both sister!

AnnieBlogs said...

REALLY needed to read this today. Thanks, friend. I love how you write.

Caroline said...

Fanning right there with you...

Emily said...

"I know where He wants me"

Yep, isn't that SOOOOOO true. Profoundly true. It's when I'm stale and fake and pitiful that I need Him the most, yet I'm totally stubborn about it.

He's just the Best Daddy Ever, isn't He?

Growin' with it! said...

boy do i know about your fire fanning dilemma. boy kinds! hang in there sista. God meets us in that pit! and thank goodness....HE pulls us out.

javamamma said...

Powerful post! I love the verse quoted above too. We all go through 'desert times' but He is faithful to bring us through the other side. (((prayers & hugs)))

Drewe Llyn said...

You know those commercials where someone says, "You know that place where..." (insert description of a life situation)"I'm there." ? Well, I'm standing in your red dot saying, "I'm there!" We have a fireplace insert and I've almost let the fire go out several times. As I've conjoled and pleaded with the coals to burst into flame I thought of that Scripture about "fanning into flame". My coal is struggling a bit these days. But I won't give up! Take care!

His Girl said...

FAN.TA.STIC post.


beautiful.

Kent said...

Gayle--you write so beautifully. We all go through seasons----just recognizing these times assures us that God is still drawing us unto Himself. This world just sinks us with all the hustle and bustle. I am scrambling like crazy to finish up my Christmas shopping so we can FOCUS FOCUS FOCUS on the real reason this year without all the hustle out there.
I am praying for you.

Halfmoon Girl said...

You are such a blessing Gayle. I am so happy to know you through blogging! This is a fantastic post- the transparency you show blesses us all. I will be praying for you. I

"Are you tired? Worn out? Burned out on religion? Come to me. Get away with me and you'll recover your life. I'll show you how to take a real rest. Walk with me and work with me—watch how I do it. Learn the unforced rhythms of grace. I won't lay anything heavy or ill-fitting on you. Keep company with me and you'll learn to live freely and lightly." Matthew 11:28-30.

Kristin said...

I am so there with you-- on both accounts. I will fight for 2 hours with a fire and hubs gets it going in 5 min. He does the same stuff I was just doing! My qt feels cold lately. Don't know why. Doing all the "right stuff" but no fire. Prayin for you girl.

carrie said...

I've felt like that for a long time now. And this morning in Sunday School the pastor mentioned that sometimes that feeling comes from a lack of serving others. You know, I serve my family (grudgingly), but I cannot remember the last time I truly served someone in need. I'm going to be praying about what God would have me do in this area. Because I think it's a real eye opener for me.

Fran said...

Perfectly beautiful!!

Thanks Gayle~
Fran

DaNella Auten said...

Remember, God PLACED the children of isreal into the dessert on purpose. My point is somtimes God allows us to go through hard times so we will grow and learn. Don't give up. GHAP (God Has A Plan)

Jenni at talking hairdryer said...

You're so special! I loved that post and will remember you this week in prayer.

Michelle Bentham said...

Hey Gayle,

Try spending some of your time just sitting in His presence, not reading the Word, not singing a song, but instead put on some soft music, light a candle and pray: "Father I need to feel Your presence about me today, soak me in Your Holy Spirit... Pour it all out to Him - "Like oil upon His feet Like Wine for Him to Drink... just pour out your love on Him and see if He doesn't show up in ways you never even dreamed He could." (As sung by Philips Craig and Dean)

My cousin once gave me a teacup for a birthday gift. She said I might know why this gift, but I didn't. There is a song written by Jimmy Dean called, "Drinking From My Saucer." She said she bought me the teacup so I could put it somewhere I would see it all the time to remind me never to drink my cup dry - but instead to only sip from the saucer and live in the overflow of His grace. I went home and did a word study on that word overflow which led to abundance and then... That's when I found this little nugget of truth: The one word in the Hebrew and Greek definitions for the words abundant and overflow was the thought of superabundance. I asked God what that looked like because of course my mind went to the place of wealth and material prosperity. That's when I heard this still small voice say, "Look again, it's more." Superabundance, as I would discover is living in a place where everything God provides is enough. And I told Him right then and there I wanted to live that way no matter what it takes. I won't say I've arrived but I am better today than I was four years ago when I received that cup. My cup overflows. I will write more on this subject over at my blog tomorrow but for now.... You've been tagged. Stop on by and play along if you have the time....

Sorry to be a blog hog, but I just felt compelled to encourage you this way!

Blessings and Happy Thanksgiving.

Lora said...

Gayle,
From the moment I read the title of your post till the last word, I was blessed. Fanning the flame has been an area the Lord has recently been speaking to me. Thank you for sharing.

Teresa said...

Hey there!!! I have been there with you and so I can share in your weariness. I am just coming out of it. The biggest key for me is, when I didn't feel like it, I gave it a voice. Say the scriptures out loud. When you don't feel like singing, sing anyway. Your mouth is the most poweful instrument. And soon your heart will follow. Gods words are omniptent and our words are potent. God's word is alive and active in you!!! Speaking his words and praises out loud carries such great power. When you start to complain or think negativly praise your way through it. Its amazing how he can change your minute, mood and day In Christ......T

Michelle Bentham said...

Hey Gayle, I did get that post up about the teacup... So Sip from My Saucer today! Happy Thanksgiving your menu sounds divine! Oh Wait! What time is it... I better get to cooking my green bean bundles and apple pie! YIKES!

Love ya, girl!
BLessings.

Anonymous said...

Jesus, send peace like a river and joy like a fountain into my Sister in the Lord's life!

Michelle said...

Hi Gayle!
I'm trying to get caught up on all my blog reading......

wanted to let you know that this is a beautiful post and really blessed me as I read it!

Michelle

Brittany said...

I really liked this post. It's good to know I'm not the only one who is left with ashes sometimes.