Sometimes, it’s hard to keep a fire going.
If you were with us in worship this week, you know that our boiler was not lit for Sunday morning worship. This was not intentional, and I appreciate everyone who powered through the discomfort. The boiler’s pilot light going out has unfortunately been a theme the last week, despite the amazing, above-the-bar work of our property team and its chair Paul Johnson. On Thursday, the boiler wasn’t working. On Monday, the boiler wasn’t lit. Space heaters and warm thoughts abound!
Paul is working with our mechanical gurus to figure out how to keep the boiler going twenty-four hours in a row, and then for a week, and then for a month, and then for a season. Then, it will suddenly be hot out, and we get to start messing around with the air conditioner—but that’s neither here nor there.
One marvelous hymn says, “It only takes a spark, to get a fire going,” which is true in theory. But fire needs to be fed, and tended, and stoked, and fanned; when it gets too big, it must be contained or scaled back, or cooled down. And the embers can reignite unless it’s absolutely out.
I think about this a lot as the church calendar year winds down this Sunday. That’s right, November 23 is the last day of Kingdomtide or Ordinary time; we are about a week and a half away from Advent, the start of something new. And in this time, I wonder how the Spirit is burning in each one of us.
I will admit there are some things in my spirit that need to be re-lit, fanned, and tended more intentionally. There are only a couple things I’d like to scale back and contain. And there’s some parts of the faith journey that I realize I’ve let burn out. Part of discipleship is keeping the fire going; building spiritual disciplines and practices that you miss if you don’t do, that you love when you do, and that influences all you are.
Maybe 2015 is the year of discipleship. Join in prayer about that, would you, please?
This Sunday, we close the year and our Hard Questions series with “Will Christ Come Again?” I look forward to seeing you in (God and furnace willing!) our warm sanctuary then if not sooner.