I often think about life as being like a candle...
Imagine we are all candles. Every single human being walking around is a candle of different shape, size, color, scent, potential, etc.
An unlit candle is essentially worthless. Is it not? Unlit, a candle may be a little aesthetically pleasing or even smell nice provided one sticks his or her nose right in it. A candle may even deceive itself into thinking it's doing a great job being a candle, but in reality, a candle is meant to be lit. A candle that goes its whole 'life' without ever giving off an ounce of heat could more accurately be described as dead. Romans 3:12 | Ephesians 2:1
A candle cannot light itself. In every circumstance, a candle must catch the flame of another lit candle or be lit by a Third Party. One of the beauties of this is that there is always enough fire to go around. Each candle has unique attributes, but the flame itself is essentially the same. Our inner selves, or wicks if you will, must catch the fire of the Holy Spirit if we ever hope to carry out our true purpose. Ephesians 2:8 | John 15:5
Once lit, a candle is never the same. Sometimes when a candle is first lit, a sudden, passionate burst of light flares up before settling down to a more controlled, steady flicker. Other times, the healthy wick slowly catches fire - perhaps without knowing the exact moment the flame became its own. In either scenario, something supernatural happens. The candle now has a new purpose. It's warm. It's attractive. It casts light into the darkness wherever it goes. It radiates an alluring aroma. It's very presence brings a peculiar joy. In all cases, a chemical reaction - transformation - occurs. It's like an entirely new creation. John 8:12 | Galatians 2:20 | 2 Corinthians 2:15
Now, here's the key - the cost; candles melt. In order for the wick to keep glowing, the physical body of wax must slowly waste away for the sake of the Flame and its neighbors. For the candle to continue to carry out its purpose, it must joyfully allow this new Spirit of Fire to do its own work. The candle must decrease. Luke 14:28 | Philippians 2:13 | John 3:30
Of course, candles can go out. In fact, there will be those who are trying to blow and spit on our fire for a variety of reasons. Although these attacks may succeed for a time, they are no match for the eternal power of the consuming fire Himself. We can always run back to the Source and to our brothers and sisters still living in the light in order to have our wicks relit. In any case, we must not allow ourselves to smolder for very long. 1 Peter 5:8 | Hebrews 12:29 | 2 Peter 2:21
Lit or not, a candle is incredibly temporary. We must choose whether to become warm, aromatic children destined to one day be wrapped up into the Light Himself or to stay hard and cold and grow increasingly stale until our wicks no longer have the capability to ever escape the darkness.
Christian, despite the unavoidable suffering of your flesh, do not grow weary in offering yourself to the Light - always remembering that we have indeed been brought from death to life. And it is eternally better. Romans 6:13
"So we do not lose heart. Though our outer self is being wasted away, our inner self is being renewed day by day." 2 Corinthians 4:16
Derek Jones - CIKK