For this reason, I remind you to fan into flame the gift of God, which is in you through the laying on of my hands, for God gave us a spirit not of fear but of power and love and self-control (2 Timothy 1:6-7).
All of us have been around a dwindling campfire when someone throws on a new log and the fire roars to life.
All of us have found ourselves spiritually depleted and in need of fanning into flame the gift of God.
Understand what “gift” means. Some think it’s Timothy’s calling, his faith, or his ministry – which is implied. We all need renewed passion for our calling, faith, and ministry.
But “gift” is more than all of this.
The “Gift” is the Spirit of God – the Author of calling, the Encourager of faith, and the Provider of ministry. A waning Spirit impacts everything about our walk with Jesus. Firing up the Spirit returns our lives to normality.
Please note “dwindling fire” should not be descriptive of your faith!
The Apostle Paul writes…
Look carefully then how you walk, not as unwise but as wise, making the best use of the time, because the days are evil. Therefore do not be foolish, but understand what the will of the Lord is. And do not get drunk with wine, for that is debauchery, but be filled with the Spirit (Ephesians 5:15-18).
There are things that you do that will diminish the Spirit, and other disciplines that will fill you with the Spirit. If you find yourself with a dwindling fire of the Spirit, you can…
Check Your Heart
What controls you? In the above passage, Paul contrasts getting drunk with the filling of God’s Spirit. We can also be controlled by money, power, recreation, and even the need to control!
Redeem the Time
The most valuable gift that God has given you is time – not money or even talents. Time! What you do with it will reveal your true self. People who pray in intimacy with God every morning will kindle their fire.
Understand God’s Will
If you don’t know God’s will simply ask Him to reveal it to you.
Be aware that God’s will changes with age, so what used to fire your spirit may seem empty now. Ask God for new purpose and calling. Don’t rest and don’t retire – reposition yourself to find and follow God’s narrow path.
Three words: Check, Redeem, and Understand!
Too often I talk with people who, while still having faith, have lost their fire.
Mark Burd, a friend of mine from the organization ReviveOhio, says that he often talks to people about Jesus and they will lower their head and say, “Well, I used to go to church” or “I used to pray.”
Mark says they lower their chin towards their chest, which he describes as a “Chin-Chester!”
Don’t be a Chin-Chester.