Sunday, August 19, 2012

August 19, 2012   

Today's Photograph . . . . People Are Like Embers   (Dave M)
Bible Study Verse
II Corinthians 12: 19 
Have you been thinking all along that we have been defending ourselves to you? We have been speaking in the sight of God as those in Christ; and everything we do, dear friends, is for your strengthening. (NIV)

There's nothing like a good fire to sit down next to at the end of a long day! My family and I have enjoyed our share of fires over the course of our outdoor adventures. 

You sit down and initially just enjoy the warmth. But as you sit there staring into the fire, memories flood back into your mind, and the stories start to flow. One story from one side of the fire - a story from the other side of the fire - another story launches . . . minutes turn into hours, and before too long, it's quiet. Everyone is ready to sleep, as stories are replaced by head-bobs - since no one wants to be the first to call it a night. 

The last half hour, everyone simply stares into the fire and watches the fire die down to a low glow of the embers. It's a magical moment that everyone hates to see end.
(Dave M)

Action Point 
It amazes me the power that a small ember contains. All you have to do is breathe on one, and it will flare up to a bright red glow. If you couple that with some dry timbers or pine needles, you can have a roaring fire within minutes. 

People are like embers . . . over time, they simply burn down to the point where you hardly notice them. They sit there quietly smoldering . . . that is until something "breathes" into them. All it takes is a little encouragement, and that person will start to show more than a low burn. The more the encouragement, the greater the flame.

Christians aren't immune to the world. It's wears on you, and if you're not careful, you can feel insignificant, worn out, and have no direction. But, there are two things that can breathe life into a deadened soul. The first one is the word of God. I can't tell you the number of times that scripture has flat out lifted my soul. Secondly, a brother or sister in Christ can be a huge encouragement! It really doesn't take a lot - just to know that someone cares and is willing to have a conversation can be enough to spark the ember into a flame. That's what we're supposed to be about - encouraging one another in the faith. 

The older I get, the more I recognize the power of encouragement - with my kids, my wife, and my friends. If you know of someone who needs a little life breathed into them, grab a donut and a cup of coffee and go pay a visit. 

God will do the heart work; you just be a friend. Make a difference today in someone's life!!!

Sportsmen's Tip of the Day
If you're backpacking, put the kids in charge of gathering firewood, tinder, and pine needles for your fire, they'll feel important!!!