Philippians 4:6 (NKJV)
“Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication, with thanksgiving, let your requests be made known to God; and the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus.”
Have you ever been so passionate about a cause, but you had no idea where to start? Maybe you start with one idea then a flood of other ideas pour into your mind and you don’t know what to do first? What happens when all those connections you are attempting to accomplish fall through or just plainly get rejected?
In life it is great to be passionate about your goals, your dreams, or even just that project you really care about. There are even times when you may get that extra spark of motivation to just do a spontaneous activity that jumps out in front of you. However, there are also times when that passion can really overwhelm you.
You can be going about your everyday life when you can feel that fire well up inside you during a conversation or out of nowhere while you are engaged with something else. You could describe it with the old clichés of a light bulb turning on or your eyes were opened to the possibilities. No matter the description you use, we are still talking about a moment of clarity when you can see all the possibilities.
Think about a time when you had a moment like this where you felt like jumping out of your seat and you were ready to go. Now think about the end result and if you were able to follow all the way through. Too often many dreams or passionate pursuits become complicated to the point where they get lost in the noise of all the extra thoughts bouncing around your mind or rerouted in another direction.
I have had this happen to me on numerous occasions where I have trouble focusing or cannot decide which path to travel down first. What started out as a fleeting thought or idea explodes into a myriad of possibilities that flood into my mind making it hard to keep up. What makes things worse is that most times I am not in a place where I can write things down or when I find a pen or paper the words have mysteriously vanished.
This reminds me of sitting around a campfire. The fire is that passionate pursuit or idea you have that will change the world. You want everyone to see it and come over to warm themselves, but there are other forces at work that have other ideas. Each new thought that adds something new, every distraction, or that indecisive moment is another log that gets thrown onto the fire. Soon that nice warming fire is an inferno burning through our mind causing us to be unsure where to go. All this energy and the ideas just fan the flames higher and higher opening the door for us to panic or just flee from the blaze.
As the fire continues to grow, we must act quickly before the flames create chaos for us. Many times we may not know where to turn when all the doors we are trying to open are locked or we reach a dead end. It is not a good feeling when this burning fire has to remain bottled up inside with no outlet or we have to abandon it all together.
These are the times I turn to the Lord to help dampen the flames and find peace. Not just peace of mind, but a peace that quells whatever source it is coming from. We don’t have to make this about hardship because the flames we find in our wildfire can come from a variety of woods. We can have the pine of too many ideas, the hickory that hides the starting point, or even the sturdy oak of locked doors with so many more we have encountered.
As Jesus was preparing for His upcoming crucifixion, He offered this to us in John 14:27, “Peace I leave with you, My peace I give to you; not as the world gives do I give to you. Let not your heart be troubled, neither let it be afraid.” The best part is that this was not just a one time offer, this peace is there for anyone who faithfully asks, whenever they ask. I know this because I have gone to Him over and over again to find it. Our God is a loving Father who is always there for us, especially in these times when the flames are becoming too much to bear.
I am also reminded of the three Jewish men we find in Daniel 3, Shadrach, Meshach, and Abed-Nego, who were cast into the fiery furnace for not worshipping a golden image. Yet in the midst of the execution, King Nebuchadnezzar exclaimed in verse 25, “Look!” he answered, “I see four men loose, walking in the midst of the fire; and they are not hurt, and the form of the fourth is like the Son of God.” They remained faithful in the Lord and were first protected by God in the fire, then they walked out completely unharmed.
The Lord can do the same thing for you. You can be protected from the flames as you make your way to safety or just wait for the flames to die down. This is the form of the peace that I have been talking about. The peace of patience as you wait for doors to open, the peace of guidance while you search for where to start, or the peace of clarity as you decide which route to take. The Lord can do this for you and much more.
So, as you pursue your passions, your dreams, or joining that good cause, be careful not to throw more logs onto the fire that are necessary. Just remember if you do or circumstance dumps on an entire truck load, remain calm and go to the Lord in prayer. He will see you safely through any fire that you may find raging in your life. Also please enjoy, “At the Fire Ring.”
AT THE FIRE RING (PART I)
Sometimes I have a passion burning deep inside like a fire out of control,
Then I further work myself into a frenzy just trying to reach my goal.
But the heat becomes so wicked as the flames now touch the sky,
I have thrown too many logs atop the pile for reasons I don’t know why.
With every new thought and idea the confusion begins to grow,
Now the future has become unfocused with no clear path for me to go.
Lord, the more I try to slow down the faster everything just wants to spin,
I don’t know how to dampen the fire without losing what you’ve placed within.
My child, you may see the many possibilities coursing through your mind,
With many you can see great successes while others are not so kind.
The shadows are there to keep you from the truth you need to see,
You just have to keep remaining faithful to find the ones from me.
Remember to search My Word to find guidance and My helping hand,
Then heed My Spirit as He protects and nudges you away from the sinking sand.
Just be careful not to quell the passion and cause the fire to cease,
I will still be there as the flames subside to reveal an inner peace.
Simple Faith Christian