Tuesday, May 24, 2011

"Songs From My Baby Years": Lord, Light the Fire Again

Stacy and I have recently discovered that our 7-week-old baby gets fussy. Thankfully, it doesn't last all day. But usually between 5 - 8pm, she will begin to cry and fuss for reasons beyond our knowing. Her diaper's been changed, she's been fed, rocked, swaddled - those comfort measures that always seem to work are all of a sudden useless. Nothing satisfies anymore. When all options have been exhausted, the only thing we can do is let her cry (in the seclusion of her nursery, of course!). It's hard to block it out. It's tempting to go pick her up. However, to do so would not only be useless, but it would rob her of a valuable lesson: she has to learn that the pain eventually subsides, that whatever she's upset about will eventually be made right. And she does. After 30 minutes of screaming bloody murderer, she calms and falls asleep.

Last week, I wrote about the song Draw Me Close. I loved feeling the closeness of God in those early days. I felt His presence all the time. It was new. Fresh. So it's only fitting that I was devastated the first time I seemingly lost that sensation. God had been so exciting to me, and all of sudden, things began to feel mundane, lifeless and dry. I thought I had done something wrong. I thought I wasn't worshiping hard enough or praying long enough. I would ask to feel His presence - nothing. I would try and sing my favorite song - nothing. I would even cry - nothing. Why was this happening? Has God left me? No. He was letting me cry in the nursery.

I think those were the moments where God said, "It's time for you to start walking by faith, Rick." Those were the moments where, instead of running to my first cry, God let me be, and I was forced to walk by faith. At the time, I wasn't sure how to do that, but soon enough, I discovered the beauty of God's Word, how it promised me that I am "sealed for eternity" and that "by one sacrifice, He has perfected for all time those who are being sanctified." When I began reading these words, I realized that God hadn't left me. He simply wanted me to learn trust and faith - and that came by leaving me in my "nursery" and forcing me to know the Truth. Do I ever feel His presence now? Absolutely. Do I feel it as often as I did when I was 17? No, but I've learned to trust in between those times. He hasn't left. He's only growing me.

Lord, Light the Fire Again was a song I connected with during these times (and still do!). It's a cry to God to renew my zeal for him (whether I feel it or not), and to discipline me. It's one of those songs that means so much in times of dryness. I need that nursery time. I need to learn trust, and when I do, God seems to return that warm feeling. This song is by the Vineyard artist Brian Doerkson. Here are the lyrics:

Don't let my love grow cold
I'm calling out, "Light the fire again!"
Don't let my vision die
I'm calling out, "Light the fire again!"

You know my heart my deeds
I'm calling out, "Light the fire again!"
I need Your discipline
I'm calling out, "Light the fire again!"

I am here to buy gold, refined in the fire
Naked and poor
Wretched and blind I come
Clothe me in white so I won't be ashamed
Lord, light the fire again

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