A firefighter friend of mine recently posted something that really got me thinking. “Firefighters are the ones who run toward’s danger to save others when everyone else is running away.” And that is the truth isn’t it? That’s also why we admire people like them so much. They care about people deeply enough to risk their life to save others. Sure, they get a paycheck, but we know that the risk/reward doesn’t really play in their favor.
I started to think about how this applies to me, the body of Christ, and the Kingdom. There are “fires” going on all around us. Are we the type of people that run into the fire or the people that are running away? We are running away from schools because of numerous “fires”. We are moving out of neighborhoods and towns because of these “fires”. We create “safe” areas so that we aren’t affected by the “fires”. But what’s happening to those who we’re running from? With no one hanging around to speak truth, fight the fight, bring hope, peace, justice, and love what will become of them? Is this really the mindset of those who have been charged with building the Kingdom? Are only some called to live in the midst of danger, and the rest are called to flee and seek safety? The idol of safety robs us from living fully into the life that God has called us into. Making disciples isn’t safe. Its messy and takes commitment. Building the Kingdom isn’t safe. It means spending time with those who are dying and it means going to where they are to bring life.
Look around at your life. Are you running into or away from the “fires”? It’s a question that I’m wrestling with daily. I hope you’ll join me in repenting of the fear and idolatry, and having faith that God can create the courage and abandon it takes to turn around and go back into the fire. Someone’s life is depending on it. It might be the person you are going into the “fire” to save, by showing and teaching them the path to true life. It might also be someone who was running away with you, who was running into a life filled with empty idolatry and fear, who saw you turn around and saw the conviction and power that propelled you to do that. Or maybe you grab them by the arm, and just be honest and real about it. Its scary, but the Kingdom is calling, lets go.