Slow Burn


Fire is such an amazing thing to watch…it is almost mesmerizing. The way flames dance and embers burn red hot is exciting to view. The heat generated from fire warms the body while the light illuminates the darkness. Even the crackling of moist wood has a surreal effect upon the soul.

I entitled this post “Slow Burn” for a reason.

Too often we run to conclusions, race to say things we will regret, boil over with anger over big or little matters, become defensive when we take words said innocently but deemed hurtful, react to situations negatively without thinking things through, succumb to bad peer pressure, seek revenge over trivial stuff, and the list goes on and on.


The “Slow Burn” is just the opposite when it comes to how we react to life’s situations. I’ll be the first to admit that life can dish out a lot of painful garbage. I will also admit that watching a lazy fire burn is soothing to the soul.

It calms the nerves. It makes us forget, at least momentarily, that life isn’t so bad after-all. Relaxation sets in and the cares of this life just burn away with each flicker of flame. The warmth produced burrows deep within and holds us fast to what is good and right. Fires can rage, but eventually they diminish and extinguish. Our lives are like that, too.

Wouldn’t we rather live in the state in between where the fire burns slow and the embers are hot? Where blame has no room and guilt has long melted away? Revenge is dropped and egos fall apart among the glow? That is how I want to live. And, you?

F I R E !

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Fire is a mesmerizing thing to watch; whether it is controlled or uncontrolled. It can be immensely useful to our survival, yet deadly and highly destructive. The outcome depends equally on man and nature. These photographs are of a controlled brush fire which appears out of control. Knowing who set the wood ablaze, it easily could have become out of control ! Very glad that it didn’t.

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Intense heat. Unbridled fury. Forceful energy. Destructive power. Thoughts of Hell.  However, if I were to include photographs of controlled fire, I would reveal images of super hot furnaces purifying and forging steel; electrical power plants powering the engines to create electricity; Bunsen burners heating chemicals to develop the next cure for a disease or a chemical breakthrough; gas-fired ovens to cook meals; camp fires to survive by during the frigid and deadly cold, and candles to warm the soul.

Rather amazing, isn’t it, that out of one essential element of the earth we can find polar opposites for good and bad. Unfortunately, the bad is where we seem to be headed as a country, and as a world populated by hundreds of countries. Fascinating, yet scary. Realistic and not some fictional story. We all live in a crazy time in the era of mankind. I rather think at moments that the aboriginal in some far-off land, not knowing anything about commerce or industry, etc., may be better off than their sophisticated cousins (the so-called industrialized nations).

I love America. I love Europe and Asia, and South America, Central America, the islands of the Oceans, The Balkans and the Baltic’s, the Middle East and the Far East. All that God created I love, but His creation was originally meant to be peaceful, and it is not. Is it my desire to put out the flame which creates destruction as well as blessings? No. I desire to fan the flame of love and peace and tolerance and freedom. However, I will not fan the flames of intolerance or bigotry, nor the flames of hatred and division. I do believe that those who cherish freedom must protect this sacred right. It’s a complicated world.

I am grateful for fire, as long as it is controlled righteously, as was originally intended.