From the Editor

Carry the Fire

“Our mission as believers is to bear witness to the work of God, to tell these hope-bringing, life-giving stories to the world.” By Major Jamie Satterlee
From the Editor

In 2008, “No Country for Old Men” swept the Oscars with eight nominations and four wins, including the award for Best Picture. The movie is based on a book with the same title, written by Cormac McCarthy. In the novel, the sheriff, Sheriff Bell, recalls how his father would take cinders from one campfire and carry them to the next. In Valerie Bell’s “Resilient,” a book on discipleship, she tells how this tradition of fire carrying passed to the cowboys from Native Americans. “The fire carrier,” she says, “was important to western life.” She goes on to say that the fire carrier brought hope, as it drove out the darkness from the night sky. The fire carrier made it possible to carry out the mission. “Hunters could keep hunting, continuing their search far from home. Cowboys could continue protecting their herds from predators. The fire carrier sustained life … food could be cooked and made edible and become life giving.”

In a way, you and I are like fire carriers. The cinders we carry are the stories of what God has done, what He is still doing, to the world around us. These cinders, these stories of God at work, bring hope to a darkened world, chasing the darkness away with the light of Jesus. John 8:12 gives us these words from Jesus: “… I am the light of the world. If you follow me, you won’t have to walk in darkness, because you will have the light that leads to life.” These cinders are life-giving. 1 John 5:11-12a tells us, “And this is what God has testified: He has given us eternal life, and this life is in his Son. Whoever has the Son has life …” While the fire carriers of old made it possible to carry out mission, being fire carriers today is our mission. Our mission as believers is to bear witness to the work of God, to tell these hope-bringing, life-giving stories to the world. 

This month, we celebrate Easter, Jesus’s death on the cross and His resurrection. In Matthew 28, we see the women, Mary and Mary Magdalene, come to Jesus’s tomb and find it empty before they encounter Jesus. He tells them, “Don’t be afraid! Go tell … ” (verse 10). Later, after meeting with the disciples, He gives them the Great Commission, which is to go out into the world and tell, to make disciples. 

This commission is ours today to be fire carriers who take these cinders out into the world to tell others about the hope and life-giving power of Jesus, who conquered death to bring us life.

Where can you carry the fire today? 

Illustration by Lan Truong

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