Summary: After a major fire at our church the aftermath is really bad. Here are some things that God revealed to me through it all.
After the Fire Goes Out
By Pastor Jim May
This past week has been very challenging. Since the wee hours of the morning on Tuesday, we have been dealing with the aftermath of the fire at our church. There is just so much to do it seems overwhelming. Dealing with insurance companies; trying to get things ready to continue on with services in a new location; piecing together as much as we could all the things that are necessary so that we could come together as a family and worship the Lord, has not been an easy task. And there is still so much more work to do.
For those who were not able to come, or may not have been made aware that we were going to have services in this location last Wednesday, let me give you a brief summary of what is happening. (Summarize the details)
First, let me say that everything in the building is a total loss. Everything was either burned, water damaged or made unusable because of the thick smoke and ash. We have attempted to salvage a few things, but there is little that can be saved. If anyone had personal property in the church, it is gone. Please give us a list of those items to include on our inventory to the insurance company within the next few days if you want reimbursement for your loss.
God has been good to us through it all and if all goes according to present plans, we should end up better off than before. We will have all new equipment and a completely remodeled building in time. Whether God opens the door for a different location, or we stay here and move back in when the work is finished, is something that only time can tell. But God is in control and we will go where He leads us.
In a situation like this, it does not pay to dwell upon why things happen, or how we could have prevented them. The fact is that there is little anyone could do to keep wiring from going bad, connections from failing and accidents from happening. It’s just a part of life and the best thing to do is learn what you can, plan for the future and move on. Like that old saying goes, “There’s no use crying over spilled milk.”
Nothing can change the past, but God has laid before us a bright future. The word has spread through the community that the fire happened and there have been numerous calls and offers of help.
Romans 8:28, "And we know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to his purpose."
After the initial shock of witnessing the fire and watching the excitement, wondering what to do next, there came a time to try to clean up and salvage what we could.
As I thought about dealing with what was left the thought came to me that what I was witnessing can be compared to what is left after the fire goes out in the heart of a Believer.
All of us desire to be on fire for God. We want to let our light shine in this dark world of sin and we want to be used to do great things for Him.
It’s not unusual to hear us singing, “Oh Lord send the Fire Just Now”, or “We must have that Fire and Holy Ghost”. We are always praying, Lord, we need the fire of the Spirit, that Holy Ghost anointing. I’m so glad that God allows us to be filled with the Holy Ghost and fire. In fact, one of the songs that we sing sometimes says, “It’s the Holy Ghost and fire and it’s keeping me alive.” That’s so true, for without the fire of the Spirit we would have no anointing and we couldn’t accomplish much for the Kingdom of God.
When I see some of you singing to the Lord and clapping your hands; or when some of you are playing your musical instruments in worship to God; or when I see your hands lifted in praise, or your eyes turned toward Heaven in worship, I know that the fire of the Holy Ghost is in your heart. Thank God for that fire!
But what happens to that Christian whose fire is gone out? What happens when the “light” of God that gives them life is neglected so long that it ceases to burn?
When the fire is hot and the light is bright it fills the house with light. One single, brightly burning, lamp can illuminate a large area, making it safe to walk in, and bringing comfort to all who are in its area. There’s nothing that brings comfort more than knowing that the power is on and that you can turn on a light to dispel the darkness.