Ever been in that situation? As I was thinking about my personal goals for the new year, I didn’t know what I wanted to do for my own spiritual development. I’ve read the Bible several times, and I think that it’s an outstanding goal and it should be one of the first goals any Christian has (and continues to have). And every year I want to grow closer to God, but how can one objectively judge something like that? I felt like God wanted something else this time. The more I prayed, the more I sensed that I wanted to practice the presence of God in a new way, hearing from God and expressing it in new ways.
Jesus so often taught important lessons in stories and parables. These illustrations often described spiritual principles better than if He would have just explained them flat out. What makes the most memorable sermons memorable aren’t always the truths expressed (even though they’re essential to understand) – it’s the stories that expressed those principles in a way that went to the heart.
So I began to write down things God put on my heart. Sometime whole devotions. Sometimes just a thought and then seeking out that thought. God was teaching new things, while reminding of old victories. I would then look for an illustration from years of photos that expressed that truth in a powerful way. You may have seen me posting these on Facebook and instagram.
As I started to do this, I was so encouraged by looking over what God was sharing with me and the way the expression was taking shape that I felt like I needed to share it for others to be encouraged — others who have the same heart and goals. The website Starting Fires was born — a collection of these expressions. It’s named in honor of the poem my wife Ruth wrote when she was a teenager. I pray that it can inspire an even greater intimacy with God in both young and old. That everyone could realize more of their divine potential, no matter where they are in their walk with God.