Sunday, July 13, 2008


As with most things, the word 'consume' can hold either a positive or a negative meaning. Sure, it depends on the person, the timing and the usage, but it's interesting to me how one word can be used in such a wide variety of circumstances. When thinking about this, my first thought was a raging fire that consumes or devours all that it encounters. Could it be something as simple as a tall glass of water that gets consumed in one long, thirst quenching drink? Sure! Maybe a fog that is so thick and engulfing that a person could feel a sense of serenity and entrapment all at the same time? Absolutely.

I find it tempting to only look at this concept from one vantage point. In our world today, the phrase 'being consumed', is very rarely thought of as a positive thing. Why? Is it that we don't "think positive" enough? That might be a small part of it, but I think we need to look a little deeper. Is it that we don't have time but to only look at the surface assessment of the situation? Maybe, but I think that is only an excuse, and a bad one at that. Are we so focused on ourselves that we can't step back and look at the big picture? That's a big part of it, but that, I think, stems from something deeper as well. So why is that as a world, we only tend to see the negative view point? The thought that came to mind for me was where Jesus talks about, "the overflow of the heart, the mouth speaks." So if my heart, and therefore my mind, actions and speech aren't focused on the Lord, then my outlook is going to tend to be negative. When I put it into those terms, its quite easy to see why our world can't see anything but the negative. As a world, we are desperate for anything to make us happy. Our hearts and minds are focused on finding the next thing, place or person that will fulfill us or make us happy. Sometimes we focus on really good things too, but we forget that those good things are still not where are hearts desire should be.

So, if I may, I will try to shed some light on the thoughts above. That raging fire that consumes and devours all that it encounters? Well, have you ever looked at a field or a forest after having been burned? I think you know where I am going with this. At first, its a charred, black, smoldering piece of land. After a little time, you will start to see the fresh, pure growth sprouting from the ground. After all is said and done, it turns out that the fire rejuvenated that land and made it better and more lush than it was before the fire. How is it that something so awe-inspiring, consuming and seemingly negative could bring such growth and prosperity? Simple, the Lord, the true consuming fire, is still in control! He always has been, and always will be. With or without us! So if I will choose to allow HIM to consume me, instead of the world, then it will be a bit easier to keep my focus off of me and on the things of the Lord. When I do that, I have a sneaking suspicion that I won't feel that sense of entrapment the next time the fog rolls in. I will take a big drink of water and thank the Lord that I have HIM to quench my thirst and I won't need anything else. Oh to be consumed by the Lord and not the worries of this world. It is a peaceful and calming reality that is ours to grasp.

Sayonara for now!

1 comment:

Carrie Anne said...

oh my! you inspire me more and more eli! you have such amazing insight!