"I have come to bring fire on the earth, and how I wish it were already kindled! Luke 12. 49
I have just been reading about Jesus' Second Coming according to the apostle John's vision in the Book of Revelation. I think every Christian should read Revelation on a regular basis (with a good commentary to hand!) because it unlocks the future so that we can approach it with confidence and trepidation, as befits those whose realistic understanding of our own weakness is matched by our faith in the power of God That balance finds expression in the virtue of humility, perfectly expressed by Jesus. In my devotional reading today, I came across the following reflection by the French luminary, Jean-Jacques Olier:
"God as Creator of time entered this temporal reality. The Word became flesh. The Infinite became limited. The All-Powerful became weak. The wise became a child. The King became a slave. The source of all grace 'became sin for us'... in suffering all its consequences on our behalf."
Think about that. God laid aside his glory, in order to get into our skin in order to save us all from the tragic consequences of our rejection of Him. From a position of strength he became weak in order to accomplish what could only be done through vulnerability. Having fulfilled his mission, Jesus is now exalted to the highest glory and power. Yet this glory and power is built on humility and love rather than on oppression and abuse. As a result it is pure and purifying - like fire. Indeed Jesus himself uses "fire" as a metaphor to describe his love, which burns away sin and hatred.
Let us pray that God would kindle that fire in our own hearts, that Jesus would burn away our sin and hatred and that our lives would burn for Jesus...