There is just something about sitting around a campfire, listening to the night sounds, hearing the crackling of the embers exploding in the heat, feeling the warmth coming from the fire, smelling the wisp of wood smoke coming off of the flames, watching little sparks being airborne for a bit and then fading into the darkness; the waves gently lapping on the shore, a soft breeze bring the healthy smell of fresh air, sipping on a hot cup of good coffee, maybe munching on a sausage cooked in the fire, meditating on the goodness of life; and maybe also enjoying the companionship of good friends, whether communicating verbally, or non-verbally.
Earlier, the corn on the cob, potatoes and fresh fish were cooked over the same open fire. The hot oil makes the fish so crispy, the baked potatoes have a flavor so differently delicious when being baked in the fire, especially when you add the butter, and the corn seems to hold its entire flavor, while capturing some extra from the heat and smoke. Putting on some fresh bread to heat up gives us its own taste treat, as the crust gets so nice and crunchy, with a little bit of burn on it, the butter melting into the bread slices, and the steam and aroma of fresh hot buttered bread invading the atmosphere when the foil is opened. Then, as the kids get the marshmallows to make some smores, another cup of coffee with maybe a bit of a sweet has its own mellowing effect. Then, it is just so relaxing to sit around that fire, leting the mind relax, and contemplate the different thoughts and memories that bubble up in the mind. Yes, this is a joy of life worth remembering.
As the days grow colder, the memories of being around a campfire remain so enjoyable. I remember one such time as above when I took my son and four of his friends camping in the BWCA out of Ely. It was a night late in August, the temperature was very warm, the sky was clear, the bugs were gone, and the moon was near full. It was so gorgeous that we slept outside one of the nights, and let the campfire burn deep into the night. The loons were laughing, the owls were hooting, and the frogs were singing away in a choir directed by the moonlight, glistening and dancing on the water’s surface. The peace that we rested in was a true gift from God. Simple things can have so much enjoyment and value.
God’s word talks about the fire that God can light in us.
One of the prophets in the Old Testament said, “But His word was in my heart like a burning fire shut up in my bones; I was weary of holding it back, and I could not! Is not my word like a fire, says the Lord, and like a hammer that breaks the rock in pieces.”
Many times in the New Testament it talks about the Lord Jesus Christ Himself baptizing us with the Holy Spirit and fire. How much fire from God do we have burning inside of us?
Life can be like a huge tub of water that keeps drenching the fire that is burning inside of us, and it often seems that the amount of water far exceeds the amount of the fire. But God can light a fire in us that the water of the world, or the enemy of our souls cannot put out, no matter how much water comes at us.
Another prophet in the Old Testament had a sacrificial animal on an altar of God. He poured water on the sacrifice, and the wood underneath it until it was completely drenched. He did this three times. The water even filled up the ditch that was dug around the altar. When He called for the fire from God to come down and burn up the sacrifice, fire from Heaven came down, burned up the sacrifice, the wood, and even the water in the trench. God has a fire for us that absolutely nothing can put out.
Oh God in Heaven, send this Holy fire deep within my being! Burn out the chaff in me, and fill me with the sent fire from Heaven. Help me be what You want me to be, and use the few short years that I have to do Your work, and Your will.
Pastor Rod Tuomi
Hibbing Christian Assembly