Saturday, September 24, 2011

Pyromaniacs Anonymous Meets At My House

I don’t know when it started, probably before I was eating solid food, but I love fire, a lot!  Any chance I get, I’ll gather up half a forest and set it ablaze.  I don’t like camping, but the prospect of a bonfire is enough to get me out in the boonies for at least a day. 

One year, we vacationed in beautiful Wisconsin.  I reserved a one-tent campsite at Potawatomi State Park, just on the south side of Sturgeon Bay.  Before night fell, we made our way to the local WalMart to stock up on wieners, chips, sodas, and everything necessary to make world-class s’mores… oh and one more thing – a big jug of charcoal starter fluid.  We pulled up to the campsite, I stepped out of the van, and headed straight into the woods.  In 15 minutes, I was dragging back a train car load of deadfall limbs.  My wife had taken the boys down to the campground toilet / shower facilities to do whatever mothers and children do while dads do what they do.  As the family walked the lane back to the campsite, my wife feared a forest fire had broken out – a fierce blaze was lighting up the woods.  It was just me… being me.

The funniest scene of this whole evening was over at the campsite next to us.  At dusk there was a distinct sound of metal and stone snapping against one another.  At the sound of every snap, a flash would illuminate two figures hunkered over a pile of sticks.  This sad process continued for about 20 minutes as father and son bonded over the laborious process of trying to start a fire with flint and steel.  All the while, my sons and I were bonding over my outrageous success of starting and stoking a roaring fire.  More on this after a word from our Sponsor… no, it’s not Diamond Match Company.
And with great power the apostles were giving testimony to the resurrection of the Lord Jesus, and abundant grace was upon them all.  (Acts 4:33)
Sometimes followers of Jesus go through life with a flint and steel, barely getting enough fire to keep them from being too cold.  We’re not supposed to live that way.  There is so much power available to us.  We get stuck doing things under our own power – many times because we are not doing the things that God is calling us to do.  The apostles, the original followers of Jesus, experienced unparalleled success because their hearts were set on doing the things God called them to do.  Sometime soon you should read the book of Acts and realize that you are called to no less success than the apostles.  Do you have faith in that?

I got up about 4am the next morning – who can sleep in a tent on rocky ground?  I stirred the fire and saw some flickering embers.  I went back into the woods, gathered another cord of deadfall and greeted my family with another inferno to incinerate warm their pop tarts over.  By mid-morning, rain was falling.  I declared that we were not camping in a muddy forest and we headed straight to the Holiday Inn in Egg Harbor – leaving the flint and steel family to enjoy the swamp all to themselves. That’s how I roll.

Clark H Smith

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