I am not a poetry aficionado by any stretch. But I do enjoy those pieces that speak to me. I can appreciate the beauty that comes from these written words that weave together a new understanding for me and help to uncover a new insight. I found one of those pieces recently. It is entitled “Fire” and is written by Judy Brown. As you can find a quiet time I invite you to read it.
What makes a fire burn
is space between the logs,
a breathing space.
Too much of a good thing,
too many logs
packed in too tight can squelch a fire,
can douse the flames
almost as surely
as a pail of water can.
So building fires
requires tending in a special way,
attention to the wood
as well as to the spaces in between,
so fire can catch, can grow, can breathe,
can build its energy and warmth
which we so need in order
to survive the cold.
We need to practice
building open spaces
just as clearly as we learn
to pile on the logs.
It’s fuel, and absence of the fuel together,
that make fire possible,
lets it develop in the way
that’s possible when we lay logs
in just the way the fire wants to go.
Then we can watch it as it leaps and plays,
burns down and then flames up
in unexpected ways.
Then we only need to lay a log on it
from time to time.
Then it has life all its own,
a beauty that emerges
not where logs are
but where spaces can invite the flames
to burn, to form exquisite patterns of their own,
their beauty possible
simply because the space is there,
an opening in which the flame
that knows just how it wants
to burn can find its way.
We pack life in so tightly sometimes. Volunteer opportunities, church meetings, sporting events, social gatherings, scheduled in so tightly there is no quiet time. Quiet time is where we can find God. Quiet time is where we can sit and listen for God. If we are going all the time, packing our logs in to tightly, our flames will surely be doused.
I invite you to take some time this week and think about how you may be dousing your fire. Where do you have life packed in too tightly? What practices can you use to build open spaces in your life? What is at risk if you do not pack in the logs of life? What beauty is wanting to emerge from your fire, from your life?
Do not miss the beauty of life. Do not miss the creation of God, because there is no breathing space. God has created this world for you, to be with you, to talk with you, to simply sit with you. I invite you to find that time, build that space, so you and God can be together. You will not regret it.
Have a great week and I will see you Sunday!