Why? Point? What Really Matters?

Philippians 2 will tell you and me and everyone around us what we need to know and where to keep our focus! Praise His name and share everywhere!

1 If you have any encouragement from being united with Christ, if any comfort from his love, if any fellowship with the Spirit, if any tenderness and compassion, 2 then make my joy complete by being like–minded, having the same love, being one in spirit and purpose. 3 Do nothing out of selfish ambition or vain conceit, but in humility consider others better than yourselves. 4 Each of you should look not only to your own interests, but also to the interests of others.

5 Your attitude should be the same as that of Christ Jesus:

6 Who, being in very nature God, did not consider equality with God something to be grasped,

7 but made himself nothing, taking the very nature of a servant, being made in human likeness.

8 And being found in appearance as a man, he humbled himself and became obedient to death—even death on a cross!

9 Therefore God exalted him to the highest place and gave him the name that is above every name,

10 that at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, in heaven and on earth and under the earth,

11 and every tongue confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.


God has a Reason….Controlled Burn

I am whipped….my husband decided yesterday to burn 24 + trees that we paid someone to cut down out of our front acre. They were in this gigantic pile. He had a Bon fire big enough to do sacrifices in….(WAIT…IT WAS A FULL MOON….MAYBE I WAS SUPPOSED TO BE SACRIFICED…OH WELL, I guess I came in too soon)…anyway I happened to go out there and I said one or two things in my woman way…I believe I was expressing my concern about all the fire flying in the air from this HUGE contained fire and “WHAT IF” those caught another tree on fire… (you know, we are usually right) … But (you know he was doing the HE-man thing)…he clearly wanted Me to go back into the house and do some laundry or some woman thing. I got the message, but happened to look up into one of the surrounding old BIG oak trees and noticed smoke….OH WAIT, WAS THAT ALSO A FLAME WHIPPING around the side WAYYYYYY up in the top of that tree that WAS NOT SUPPOSED TO BE BURNING? Oh, well yes it is and I do believe I was correct. (Yes, I did keep that little remark to myself.) So I said, “honey, is that tree on fire?” He began looking and calmly said, hmmm I believe it is. I wonder how that happened. (Hmmm, yes I wonder…again I thought that to myself.) of course then he began yelling at me about how if I had just bought him another chainsaw like he needed this would not be an issue. I was like….buddy, don’t even try to put this on me! I thought we decided to spend the $3,250 to have someone come out and CUT ALL THESE TREES DOWN FOR YOU instead of replacing your broken chainsaw, but you are right I should have spent the $300 on the chainsaw and saved the other and you could have simply cut them all down by yourself and we would not be having this issue right now! I said forget it…what do we need to do RIGHT NOW to fix this? Do you want me to go drag the water hose over here? (He did have it by the main fire.) He said it will not go any farther. Great! So, I said do I need to go and buy another one? Yes…ok, off I go… The rest of the story is way to long to even type out. The entire ordeal was exhausting. We had ladders perched up on top of massive logs (from other trees that had been cut but would be sold and not burned), yes, ladder wobbly perched on it trying to get higher so the water would actually hit the part of the top of the tree on fire….I yelled, YOU hold the ladder because you are stronger than I am and give me the hose and let me climb up. Good grief you would have thought he was a fireman and I was someone just wanting to hold the firehose. He did not want me to do anything. So he did finally say ok. ( Honestly, I think it was only because I threw in the YOU ARE MUCH STRONGER THAN ME comment that made him go with my plan.) I am climbing up this ladder (remember it is on top of this massive log that is on top of ground that is not exactly what you would call level AND it is getting dark outside), as I am climbing and he is trying to maintain control and not lose balance of himself, the ladder or me or even the log for that matter, I see the back leg is not stable on the log yet the ropes training we had taken at work made me say to myself….keep your mouth shut and you do your part and let him do his part. I thought oh my, if one of us old people go we will both go and there will most likely be some broken bones. Won’t be pretty. Ok, shut up mind and climb…climb…climb. Don’t look down and don’t think about it or complain. I actually did really well…..I was way up there and still just cannot get the water to really hit the fire. I said, can I go up anymore? (It was really iffy…) He said one or two….(ok, there was only 3 left IF you are also counting the very top which I know I cannot balance myself on that.). So, up two more I go….very wobbly, very high, DON’T think about it, just do it. Impressed myself when I realized I was holding that hose with my LONG arm stretched as far as I could AND balancing pretty good on top of this skinny ladder (again the ladder that was balancing on top of a round log on top of unleveled ground being held by an exhausted husband). Still just cannot quite do what we needed. Most of the water was hitting right below where we needed to hit. We did hit the fire a time or two but not even close to enough. I looked down and said now what?, and then the wobbling began….I was saying “whoa”and he began yelling get down now….get the f— down now! I was moving down as fast as I could! (His yelling at me like he did would normally have really hurt my feelings and ticked me off, but not this time. We both knew it was stress and we both knew if I did not get down with perfect timing the alternative was not going to end up very well. Ok…received a cut or two but jumping on the log was nice. Now what?

Ended up he decided he would simply watch it and he clearly did not want to call the fire dept. He clearly did not need me for anything after several suggestions and asking questions I decided I would simply go in the house and let him take care of it as any real man would. Right? I went in about 10:30pm. He finally came in between 12:30 and 2am. This Sunday morning we are both exhausted and sore and hurting all over. We both had some good laughter over the whole thing. He fell several times and got his foot stuck in the big fire once. He said he finally realized his other foot and weight were on the log that had trapped his other foot. Once he realized that it was an easy fix. Lol. That is what tired and stubborn will do to you. He said the tree finally burned down far enough and chunks fell off and so finally he was able to get the water on it and get it put out. He said he even began praying for God to just help him many times. He had the ladder propped up on a tree and was at the top of it and he said it was going over and he was really, really praying then. God did help him yet again.

I have to thank God because I know if it were not for the prayers being answered things would not have turned out so well. It was NOT the ropes class at work I took that helped me to trust and keep climbing. It was NOT my husbands great strength that held the ladder on the log on unleveled ground, not to mention with one leg partially off the log. It was NOT just good luck. It was NOT my awesome ability to balance myself at that height that kept us from falling and really getting hurt or just good luck that this fire did not spread and get worse.

While I would have loved for prayers to have been answered simply because we were able to reach the fire with the new water hose I ran to Lowe’s and bought at the beginning of the ordeal I still know God was right there the entire time. Again Daniel 3 comes to mind and this problem we had this time could not be anymore fitting with Daniel 3 being about being thrown into the fiery furnace and we were also dealing with a pretty overwhelming fire situation ourselves.

(These points should be considered in many things such as when faced with health issues or family issues or anything. We have quickly answered prayer, then things we have to pray longer and harder over and then things that after being prayed over for a longer time don’t turn out quite like we may have wanted but never the less you can know God was and is still there.)
As Beth Moore’s study on Daniel points out…page 46 of her study guide.
Consider three different scenarios when people of God face a fiery trial…

1. We can be delivered FROM the fire.
Example would be we pray and suddenly a rain open up and put the fire out or the hose I ran and bought helped us reach the flames right away and put it out. (Or, if it were health, maybe Dr did tests and after prayer you quickly found out it was not your worse fear and you are going to be fine.) WHAT WE RECEIVE FROM THAT ANSWER….It helps build our faith. The problem with the easiness of the fix is that over time we might question the seriousness of it. We might question if it were really God or simply because we bought the hose and He was not there at all.

2. We can be delivered THROUGH the fire.
Example is when you have to pray for an extended time. For our situation last night it did not feel like it would end. No matter what we tried it failed. God was there the entire time though, even helping us with our balance on the ladder….not once but several times. (If it were a health situation maybe you received the news it was cancer. Now you will have to have chemo and that is requiring you to step on into the furnace and and you will now have to be delivered through the fire.) WHAT YOU RECEIVE FROM THAT ANSWER…Our faith is refined. When you have to cry out to our God longer you must also rely on Him longer, trust Him longer. When our faith is refined we grow. We have some of the weak faith burned off, it becomes stronger. We have a stronger testimony. We know God was with us and over time you can hold onto that instead of as in the first point questioning if God were there at all.

3. We can be delivered BY the fire.
Example would be you prayed long and hard and yet it did not maybe go like you intended. When we are delivered by the fire we are delivered into His arms. Here on earth or for those left behind it often seems it is the worst case scenario. For those delivered by the fire (for those who put their faith and trust in our savior Jesus Christ), this is when we are no longer here to fight through the battles. WHAT YOU RECEIVE FROM THAT ANSWER…Our faith is perfected. Our race is over and we have crossed the finish line!

I believe last night we were between 1and into 2. Now, I say that knowing we simply touched into point 2, I have been through worse and know it could have been worse. It was not easy enough to have just been point 1. Today looking back on the many details of a long night I can see clearly how God taught us some things as He stayed by our side. Taught us maybe to even trust each other a little more.