Fires can be devastating! In the jungle there is no 911, no
Fire Department, Fire Fighters or fire hoses and trucks…
One afternoon the entire village stood on the riverbank and watched across the swift moving waters as a raging fire approached our settlement. Like a tornado it swept across the forest floor consuming everything in its path. The entire area was a patchwork quilt of gardens planted with bananas, rice, yucca, corn, and sugarcane…
Many of the new believers had fields laden with produce, as did their unbelieving neighbors. Shocked at what we were watching, the believers began to pray. Could that fire jump across the river? The blaze began to pick its fields to blister as it “zigzagged” toward us.
To our utter astonishment the fire leapt over the believers’ fields and consumed the others. Not one field of a believer was touched! God’s demonstration of Sovereign control over the elements of that wildfire was undeniable.
God was in that fire!
“And I myself will be a wall of fire around it, declares the Lord,
and I will be its glory within.” Zechariah 2:5
Since time and memorial the Darien jungle and its unpredictability had ruled! Whether it was the fluctuating weather, the epicenter earthquake, the remote isolation, the absence of communication to the outside world, the challenge of transportation or the miscellany of wild animals, poisonous insects, army ants, snakes and vampire bats…we were captive to the jungle around us. This was one of those days when my mind concurred with the reality.
We all stood amazed at God’s presence in that most obscure place. He had been there all along. The boldness of His Sovereignty was magnified in that raging fire. The assurance that regardless of the circumstance we were experiencing, we were “…shielded by God’s power…” (I Pet. 1:5) was our pre-eminent thought as we stood “shaking in our boots”. The promise that “the beloved of the Lord shall dwell in safety by Him; and the Lord shall cover him all day long” was as real that day as it ever would be. We surely sensed that covering as we surveyed His handiwork!
While buried in the jungle, I often sang a song taken from Psalm 32:7. “You are my hiding place. You will protect me from trouble and you surround me with songs of deliverance, whenever I am afraid, I will trust in You…” Delivered and protected, standing on the edge of the Pucuro River, I was reminded of the truth “God makes winds his messengers, flames of fire his servants”! Psa. 104: 4
We are saved to serve, called to be “flames of fire”. Alive, dancing through life, consumed with the burden on His heart… controlled by His sovereign will.
“HE makes his ministers a flame of fire…” Psalm 104:4
~Jackie Johnson - I am a former tribal missionary to the Kuna Indians on the Colombian border in Central America. Fluent in several languages, my husband and I currently pastor a Spanish-speaking church in Southern California. My passion is discipling and equipping dedicated young women for life, marriage, motherhood, and beyond. I am the mother of two daughters and the grandmother of three Princesses and four young Knights.