Friday, April 29, 2011

Fiery Sermon

The story is told of a member of a certain church, who previously had been attending services regularly, stopped going. After a few weeks, the minister decided to visit him. It was a chilly evening. The minister found the man at home alone, sitting before a blazing fire. Guessing the reason for the minister's visit, the man welcomed him, led him to a comfortable chair near the fireplace and waited.

The minister made himself at home but said nothing. In the grave silence, he contemplated the dance of the flames around the burning logs. After some minutes, the minister took the fire tongs, carefully picked up a brightly burning ember and placed it to one side of the hearth all alone. Then sat back in his chair, still silent. The host watched all this in quiet contemplation. As the one lone ember's flame flickered and diminished, there was a momentary glow; and then it's fire was no more. Soon it was cold and dead.

Not a word had been spoken since the initial greeting. The minister glanced at his watch and chose this time to leave. He slowly stood up, picked up the cold, dead ember and placed it back in the middle of the fire. Immediately it began to glow once more with the light and warmth of the burning coals around it.

As the minister reached the door to leave, his host said, with a tear running down his cheek, "Thank you so much for your fiery sermon. I shall be back in church next Sunday."

Do we live in a world today, which tries to say too much. Consequently, few listen.


  1. "For God is in the heavens, and thou upon earth; therefore let thy words be few", Ecclesiastes 5: 2, and "So that, my beloved brethren, let every man be swift to hear, slow to speak, slow to wrath", James 1: 2 come to mind.

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