Burn Hot and Never Burn Out

on 6/19/2010

Recently I read an article that said if Christians try to remain on an emotional high forever then they are destined to burn out. It basically said that we should expect and allow emotional lows (as if that’s what God intends) for to do otherwise would inevitably lead to downfall. So we should allow the downs to prevent getting down.

But I don’t believe that. I believe we can, by living in the Spirit and constantly focusing on God, permanently remain on a very high emotional level. I believe God never designed a single emotional roller coaster, that those are the devil’s rides. I believe God never desired for us to experience personal temperature changes. When Jesus said that He will vomit out the lukewarm, I believe He was saying we should be hot all the time. I can hear the David Crowder Band song You are My Joy, which begins, “And He set me on fire, and I am burning alive.”

God “maketh His angles spirits, and His ministers a flame of fire (Hebrews 1:7).” “John [the Baptist] answered, saying unto them all, ‘I indeed baptize you with water; but One mightier than I cometh . . .He shall baptize you with the Holy Ghost and with fire (Luke 3:16).” “For our God is a consuming fire (Hebrews 12:29).”

Our God is a fire, we are baptized with fire and we are made flames of fire. The representation of the Spirit being given to the disciples was tongues of fire sitting on them (Acts 2). God wants to put His fire within us and for us to burn hot forever. God doesn’t want us hot then cold then lukewarm then hot then cold , in some never ending never constant thermal change.

I remember that when I first began living for God a friend said I was “on fire for God.” It struck me funny because I didn’t think of it that way. I thought I was just doing what a normal Christian should do. I was studying and praying and trying to get my friends saved. We need to forget that idea that being on fire for God is some sort of temporary emotional Christian high. When you get saved and baptized with the Holy Ghost God sets you on fire. You should never burn out. Call it “on fire for God,” call it whatever you want. But your Christian life should be characterized by constant increase, constant burning, with no dips, dives or valleys.

“You are the light of the world. A city that is set on a hill cannot be hid. Neither do men light a candle, and put it under a bushel, but on a candlestick; and it giveth light unto all that are in the house. Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father which is in Heaven.” (Matthew 5:14-16)

God lights us on fire and wants us to constantly shine before men. You might say, “Byron, that’s impossible, life happens.” But I don’t buy that excuse either. The Bible shows us how to be constantly stirred up for God. The Bible gives us wisdom and examples so that we can see how to live with a fire that never fizzles.

“Thou wilt keep him in perfect peace, whose mind is stayed on Thee, because he trusteth in Thee (Isaiah 26:3).” “Great peace have they which love thy law: and nothing shall offend them (Psalm 119:165).” “These things have I spoken unto you, that in Me you might have peace. In the world you shall have tribulation: but be of good cheer; I have overcome the world (John 16:33).”

I believe this is a difficult teaching. Honestly, while I would characterize the last six years as a continual burning for God, there have certainly been days where I didn’t burn brightly. I have experienced emotional ups and downs, but no more. I’m over that. If I focus on God’s Word and God’s promises then I don’t ever need to be scared, troubled or discouraged. I’m going to focus on Him and His reality and His Will for my life.

What if you get in a car wreck? What if you lose your job? What if you have some other negative situation? First you must ask yourself the question I hear few Christians asking, “Was this my fault?” Frankly, it probably was, but that’s another essay. No matter what happens you can run to God and His promises and find help.

Hasn’t God promised you health and healing (1 Peter 2:24, Ex 23:25)? Hasn’t God promised you provision (Phil 4:19)? Hasn’t God promised you His plans and a good future (Jeremiah 29:11)? Focus on God’s Word and God’s promises. Trust them, for God is not a man that He should lie, nor the son of man that He should repent. What He says He does, what He speaks comes to pass.

Look at King David before He ever sat on the throne. When He and His men returned to Ziklag they found their homes burned and their families kidnapped (1 Samuel 30). Most of us would cry and crawl into bed. But King David encouraged himself in the Lord. Then David inquired of the Lord and God showed Him what to do. And “David recovered all.”

I don’t believe I am naturally able to stay stirred up and positive all the time. My eyes will look at the problems in front of me, my mind will worry and doubt, my heart will fail. But all of that is of the flesh and the devil. God has given me everything I need today. God promises me everything I will ever need. God has spiritually set me on fire, and God wants me to constantly burn hotly and brightly for him. There are no excuses for growing cold, not with the blood of Christ on us and God’s Spirit inside us.

You are going to have troubles in the world, but God will always provide you a way out, and God will always help you recover all. Don’t let yourself get discouraged. Focus on God and His Word and you can have constant peace and joy so that your Godly flame forever burns brightly and gives light to everyone.

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