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Friday, January 8, 2010

Friday Freelance: FIRE

I breathe
I eat
I dance
I die
And yet I never live

You can feel me
But cannot touch me
Although your heart may hold me

Nothing with life survives without me
And nothing of heaven and earth will survive me

I am Fire

Friday Freelance: FIRE

Few things please and fascinate me as does fire.

Dancing flames soothe my soul as might crashing waves or gently babbling brook or wind whispering in pines. I'd rather stare at a fire than T.V. any time. Add one of my daughters at the piano or violin, a glass of Riesling, an open Bible—you might just convince me that I've died and gone to Heaven.

A most captivating mystery of fire is that I stuff log after log into a stove that utterly destroys the wood, returns beauty and warmth, and leaves behind bits of ashes. My mind knows there's some scientific equation about matter and energy that explains this. My soul cares not a whit.

Perhaps most fascinating to me is that the Holy Spirit of Almighty God is represented by fire. Though He is also represented as water and air (and even as a dove), His representation as the fire taken into our bosoms which does not burn us deeply resonates with me. Whatever mighty transformation the Lord may achieve by the power of water or air, nothing can completely alter matter as can fire.

"Who can endure the day of His coming?
And who can stand when He appears?
For He, like a purifying fire ...
Will be enthroned to refine and purify His wealth,
Will purify His priestly sons ...
That they may rightly bring offerings to YHWH."
~ Malachi 3:2-3 (author paraphrase)

I've said before that when I surrendered to the Holy Spirit, He did an "extreme makeover—soul edition." The woman who was baptized on December 4, 1988 is still alive, but she bears little resemblance to the person I am now. Fire has completely altered what once existed.

The last two months have been a study of Psalms 101 thru 125, which I introduced as "thoughts on praise and suffering." The Psalms are valued for their words of praise. They say nearly as much about suffering.

I do not think the two can be separated. Suffering is the fire that purifies the offering—the sacrifice—of praise.

Suffering is the matter taken by the Spirit's fire and transformed into the currency of ashes which the Lord exchanges for His beauty.

"Christ-followers have more at their disposal
to handle pain & suffering than anyone else on earth.
One might even argue that we were designed for it."
~Sarah Markley

Contrasting points-of-view, questions and feedback are invited. Post to "Comments" or e-mail to Copyright 2010, Anne Lang Bundy, all rights reserved.
"I am Fire" poem by Anne Lang Bundy
Image from


  1. Touching. Cannot wait for no more suffering though. Thanx Anne.

  2. May you continue to burn for Him, Anne! Praise the Lord for a beautiful fiery message!

  3. Amen, beauty for ashes. I love you sis.

  4. Thank you Anne! Have a nice weekend. Stay close to the fire and keep warm.

  5. Only a God like ours can be described like both water and fire. Yes!

    I love how so many descriptions of God involve movement...He moves inside us through His Spirit so we can become changed people. I pray I don't resemble the same person I was in 1990, but sometimes the closer to Him I get the more I'm convicted. But forgiven.

    Have a happenin' weekend. ;)
    ~ Wendy

  6. Beautiful thoughts. I'm very interested by your love for fire. I also find it very calming, and you made me consider the contrast between people who love sitting by the ocean and people who love sitting by the fire.

  7. This made me stop to think about the positive use of fire. It serves far more purposes for good than for destruction ~ though, it does destroy. Enjoyed your thoughts.

  8. Wow, I wish I could duplicate THAT image... :-)

  9. T. Anne, it's wonderful to know that when every tear is wiped away, no pain will remain in even the memory.

    Bible Lover, I'm big on "fiery." :D

    Denise, you've been in my thoughts and prayers. I'm out of town but will be in touch.

    Russell, sad to say, not every building in the Midwest has a wood stove. I'll appreciate that fire even more when I'm home again.

    Wendy, I'll glady accept the conviction of the Lord with the knowledge that I'll never be condemned by Him.

    Rosslyn, I deeply appreciate all these calming elements. But having a fire six feet from where I write pretty much 24/7, all winter long, does allow me to appreciate fire more than the others.

    Patty, thank you. The fact that fire can destroy every other physical element by altering it is to me its most awesome capability.

    Kelly, with the work you do, you don't need to. That image is a work of man's art. The images you capture put God's art in its best light.

  10. I'm late to this post, Anne, but it's so beautiful. The Holy Spirit as fire is one of my favorite depictions of it. I believe I'm experiencing a bit of that now...perhaps more than a bit. The key is to give over to it and let it do its work...and make sense of it all later. God bless you this weekend.

  11. Gwen, you absolutely thrill me with your words. I'm so glad to be a witness to the Lord's work in your life. : ) I love you!


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