I was at a local County Fire & Rescue Department recently conducting training when everyone’s radios began to squawk with alarms. Two fire captains launched into action and left what I thought was quite valuable training! 😉
A call had gone out for a house fire.
Not too soon later they returned to the training and shared that the call was a “false alarm”. Someone mistook the smoke and flames from a controlled burn for a house fire.
A controlled burn?
Uhm…”What’s that?”, I asked one of the fire fighters.
Controlled burning is any fire intentionally ignited to meet specific land management objectives, such as to reduce flammable fuels, restore ecosystem health, recycle nutrients, or prepare an area for new trees or vegetation.
I believe we need to set controlled burns to our soul. I know I do.
I need to ask God to ignite Holy fires in me to:
- Reduce “flammable” sin material around my heart
- Restore my pure heart and my eco-system with the Lord
- Recycle the Spirit’s nutrients into my soul
- Prepare my heart for something new
Author Rocky Flemming in his book Prayer Cottage shares that there are many aspects to intimacy with the Lord in prayer….and one of them involves our spending time in the prayer room of desolation. He says we need to get to a quiet and still place before God and seek His voice for what’s in our life that displeases Him and keeps us apart from His abiding strength and love.
This is a hard thing. It’s unpleasant. I’ve done it and it sort of hurts. In the prayer room of desolation, I have to come face to face with the things in my life that displease God. Impatience, lust, laziness, pride, fear of provision…being judgmental.
I pray today for myself and for each of you that we allow and, in fact, invite a controlled burn of the Holy Spirit in each of our hearts. To burn away that which the Lord did not intend for us.
God is a pure and holy God and He wants to live His life of love and purity in and through us.
Lord, we give you permission to come and burn away those things in our hearts that displease you. We want renewal, we want to restore what has been lost due to our sinfulness, we want to recycle the Spirit’s presence in our lives and we want our hearts prepared for something new. Give us courage and wisdom to enter into the prayer room of desolation.
In the glorious name of our living Jesus, Amen
See, the former things have taken place, and new things I declare; before they spring into being I announce them to you. – Isaiah 42:9