Posts Tagged ‘kindling’

I love to read the stories of the people God has used powerfully throughout history.  And I especially get challenged when I see women of God who surrendered all to Him.    Their words are kindling to my spirit, starting fires in my heart and mind.  Here are five of my favorites.

Joan of Arc

Joan of Arc, mystic visionary, military leader, martyr, heroine of France:

“One life is all we have and we live it as we believe in living it. But to sacrifice what you are and to live without belief, that is a fate more terrible than dying. “

“In God’s name! Let us go on bravely!”


Catherine Booth

Catherine Booth, co-founder of The Salvation Army:

“If we are to better the future we must disturb the present.”

“Here is the reason why we have such a host of stillborn, sinewless, ricketty, powerless spiritual children. They are born of half-dead parents, a sort of sentimental religion which does not take hold of the soul, which has no depth of earth, no grasp, no power in it, and the result is a sickly crop of sentimental converts. Oh! the Lord give us a real, robust, living, hardy, Christianity, full of zeal and faith, which shall bring into the kingdom of God lively, well-developed children, full of life and energy, instead of these poor sentimental ghosts that are hopping around us.”

Amy Carmichael

Amy Carmichael, missionary to India, rescuer of children, founder of Dohnavur Fellowship:

“But God is the God of the waves and the billows, and they are still His when they come over us; and again and again we have proved that the overwhelming thing does not overwhelm. Once more by His interposition deliverance came. We were cast down, but not destroyed.”

“Missionary life is simply a chance to die.”

Corrie ten Boom

Corrie ten Boom, survivor of Nazi concentration camp, author of The Hiding Place:

“Hold everything in your hands lightly; otherwise it hurts when God pries your fingers open.”

“Trying to do the Lord’s work in your own strength is the most confusing, exhausting, and tedious of all work. But when you are filled with the Holy Spirit, then the ministry of Jesus just flows out of you.”

Isobel Kuhn

Isobel Kuhn, missionary to China and Thailand:

“I believe that in each generation God has called enough men and women to evangelize all the yet unreached tribes of the earth. It is not God who does not call. It is man who will not respond!”

“The difficult lessons of 1942 taught me to fear leaning heavily on human props. I had surrendered husband, child, friends, all I possessed, long ago. But this was something deeper. This was relinquishing my rights to them. This was holding them, but on the open palm of my hand…. Affection, especially with intense natures… runs to excess if given free rein. Uncrucified love runs to inordinate affection and selfish possessiveness which blights rather than blesses.  When we allow the Lord to nail our affections to the cross (to use the scriptural metaphor), we do not cease to love. We love even more widely, but it is a love stripped of corrupting influences. Love is not killed – only the seed of corruption in natural affection is killed.”

What about you?  Who has started fires in your heart and mind?

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In the Philippines

Dear Kindling Friends,

I am so grateful that you read Kindling.  I love writing this blog, and hope that occasionally it helps to start fires in your heart and mind.

I know you haven’t seen too much from me lately, and you won’t for another month.  I am speaking and traveling a great deal.  The priority is preparing messages and being with the people where I am.  So finding time to write has been a challenge!

I know, though, that you are enjoying the guest posts from my Redbud Writers Guild sisters:

Working with Empty by Ilona Hadinger

My Grandma’s Smile Just Changed Your Life by Amy Simpson

Trials in the Vineyard by Vivian Mabuni

The Nature of Love Is to Expand by Jennifer Grant

  Radical Experiment: Put Yourself in a New Context by Natasha Robinson

More to come.

And for those who speak Spanish, we have posted two more of my translated blogs.  You can see all of them at the En Espanol tab above, or the two latest:

El Día que Llevamos Gozo a Todos en Walmart

 Amo Mí Espacio

Each week I will be posting some thoughts on Grace, as part of the preparation for the June 2 Worldwide Day of Prayer for Prodigals.  You can read the introduction here, and I will greatly appreciate your prayers as I seek the Lord for each of these.

Finally, if you know a graduate, I hope you will consider giving my little book, Secrets of Success.  These are 12 letters I wrote to my children when they were in high school—each encouraging them with a different “secret of success” for life.  It is short, but hopefully profoundly impacting:  “30 minutes to read, a lifetime to apply.”

I love that I am getting to know some of you as you comment—I love comments.  And I truly appreciate your shares and tweets.  Let me know if there is something you would like to see in Kindling.  And I am grateful for your prayers in this very busy time for me.  God has been blessing greatly.

For more fires in hearts and minds,


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Could I write a blog post once a week?  Did I have the time, energy and ideas to share 500 or so words every week?

My initial goal when I started Kindling on January 31, 2010 was to—hopefully–write once a week.  But as I got going—and back into writing—I found the ideas started flowing.

In two years I have posted 228 blog articles.  Here’s a happy fact:  Though some are much better than others, there is not one I am ashamed to still have in my archives.

I’m thrilled to have 188 subscribed followers and another 200 who follow via Networked Blogs.  But I’m a little greedy.  I would love to have a lot more subscribers.

Why?  So I can have better numbers and improve my Klout score?  Well, that’s nice.  But truly, I just want to start more fires.  I believe God has used my writing to kindle fires in some hearts and minds, and I want to interact with many “kindling” people.

We all have so far to go to truly think and act and live and love like Jesus.  I am hoping to add a lot more fatwood to the fire, to be a fireseed, to enflame you and many readers with true Kingdom attitudes and actions.

So here’s my offer and my request:

I am giving away some books written by very special friends of mine, one each day for a week:

Half the Church: God’s Global Vision for Women by Carolyn Custis James

Lost Women of the Bible: The Women We Thought We Knew by Carolyn Custis James

The Gospel of Ruth: Loving God Enough to Break the Rules by Carolyn Custis James

Grumble Hallelujah: Learning to Love Your Life Even When It Lets You Down by Caryn Dahlstrand Rivadeneira (autographed)

Love You More: The Divine Surprise of Adopting My Daughter by Jennifer Grant (autographed)

Small Things with Great Love: Adventures in Loving Your Neighbor by Margot Starbuck (autographed)

Secrets of Success:  Letters to My Children by Yours Truly (autographed)

To be eligible for the drawings for these books, I need you to comment on this post.  In your comment you can do one of three things:

  1. Tell me how Kindling has been a spark to your heart or mind.  Feel free to reference a specific article.
  2. Tell me that you have newly subscribed to Kindling, so that you are sure to receive each post.  Of course, you still get to choose which ones you read. Just click on the Subscribe button in the upper right corner of Kindling.
  3. Tell me that you have forwarded this blog post to a friend and encouraged them to check out Kindling.

I will begin the drawings on February 1, doing one each day for a week.  You remain eligible for each drawing until you are a winner.

I look forward to doing some arson work with you—setting God-sized fires in our hearts and minds in the coming year.  I am grateful for you.

Judy Douglass


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I thought you were supposed to get set in your ways, reactionary, sedentary as you get older.

I’m just getting more and more radical.  I want to stir things up, start fires, cause change.

I loved reading Radical by David Platt, and even more loved hearing him speak this summer in Colorado.  Of course, it was hard to believe someone who looked like he was barely 20 could have such wisdom.

My friend Natasha Robinson and her friend Sophie were deeply affected by the same book.  They have issued a Radical challenge and have invited you and me to join in.  Sophie will be doing a monthly Radical Living blog, which I will be posting.

You can read Natsha’s post at her A Sista’s Journey blog—she gives all the details. So click on over and start some fires and cause some change.

Are you ready to be Radical?

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In honor of my Kindling post #200, I want to say thank you to my readers.

I am so grateful for those who take time to read what I write.  I certainly hope Kindling has been an encouragement to you—and trust it has ignited a few fires in your heart and mind.

I would like to invite you to subscribe to Kindling, if you don’t already.  I subscribe to blogs I want to be sure to see, so they come to my inbox.  I may not read them all, but I don’t have to go looking for them.  They come to me.  So all you have to do to ensure that Kindling comes to you is click on the Subscribe icon in the upper right corner.

I also want to invite you to enter into conversation on Kindling.  I would love to hear from you:  Do you have thoughts or responses to a particular article?  Topics you would love to see me address?  Concerns you want to express?

Of course, I would be additionally grateful if you recommend Kindling to your friends.

And I would love to pray for you.  Let me know if I can do that with some specific requests.

May your Thanksgiving celebration be joyful and filled with gratitude to our very good God.

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I am privileged to have friends around the world.  Many of them speak Spanish as their heart language.

One of those people is Ivy Lam, who lives in Guatemala.  Ivy likes the premise of Kindling:  Starting fires in hearts and minds, and she would like her friends to read these articles.

So she has been translating some of my blog posts into Spanish.  I am so grateful.

So far we have eight articles posted under En Espanol at the top of the page:

So if you prefer to read in Spanish, or have friends who habla espanol, feel free to send these posts on to them.  Or post on Facebook or Twitter, which you can do easily at the end of this post.

And yes, I know this should be written en espanol.  But I can’t get a good translation until tomorrow.

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Do you have hopes and dreams?  Plans for your life?  How are you doing at becoming the person you want to be?  At accomplishing what you want to do?

Enter the longleaf pine tree.  This special tree grows in the southeastern USA, mostly in the state of Georgia.  All pine trees have a center loaded with pine resin—but in the longleaf pine the heartwood is ultra-saturated with a flammable pitch that makes it perfect as quick and powerful kindling.  The stumps and joints of the tree yield this amazing firestarter when cut into sticks called fatwood.

A  close look at a stick of fatwood reveals dense streaks of the pine resin.  Two sticks can start a campfire of much larger logs.  It is 100% natural firestarter—it is super kindling.


God has provided Holy Fatwood as super kindling for our lives.

Scripture tells us that Fire is one of the names of God.  He led the Israelites through the wilderness as a pillar of Fire at night (Exodus 13:21).  He called Himself a consuming Fire (Hebrews 12:29), burning away the impurities and idols in our lives.

And then He promised that He would actually come to live in us as Fire:  “But after me will come one who is more powerful than I, whose sandals I am not fit to carry. He will baptize you with the Holy Spirit and with fire.”  (Matthew 3:11)

The Holy Spirit is God’s fatwood, filling and saturating us with never-ending fuel for all that He wants to do in and through us. He is the 100% supernatural firestarter for igniting our passions, empowering our efforts, and keeping our hearts on fire for Him.
It is my desire to be so saturated with this Holy Fatwood, with the Holy Spirit, that my life is on fire with His light and I walk in that power to be and do all God has for me.

I join Jim Elliot in this prayer:  “Saturate me with the oil of the Spirit that I may be aflame.  Make me Thy fuel, Flame of God.”

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I’ve been on earth a long time and in ministry a long time.  After graduation,  I was single for 9 years and married without children for 5 years.  I have been a mom for 30 years, and now all 3 of my children are married and I have 4 grandchildren.


Hopefully I’ve learned a few things in those years and through those experiences.  So let me share a few of the truths that have sunk in fairly well, in no particular order:


1. God is crazy in love with me.

Amazing, I know!  I never get over it.  He pursues me, desires to be with me, pours extravagant love all over me.  This is wonderful to remember at so many different times—when I don’t feel loved, when I haven’t loved someone well, or have not obeyed….


2. God remembers that I am dust.

He knows how weak and sinful I am.  He is not surprised when I blow it.  He loves to extend mercy.  He even says He gets more glory because I am so dusty.


3. God’s plan is always better than mine.

Always.  This has been one of the hardest things for me to absorb—I always seem to think my plan is best.  I advise God regularly.  He listens patiently, then reminds me again that He has a better way.  We can try my way first, then always have to return to His way.  Or we can do it His way first—a much better option.



4. God has made me the way I am so I can do what He created me to do.

He has invited me to be on His Kingdom building team—ME!  I can’t build anything, make anything, draw anything.  But He gave me words to use for my part in His grand endeavor.


5. One of God’s favorite words is “wait.”

Not my favorite at all.  I want it now.  I want it my way.  So God often has me in “the waiting room.”   You see, it’s there that I learn more of what God is like—and what I am like.  I discover what it means to persevere.  It was in the waiting room that Isaiah 60:22 came alive:  “I am the Lord.  In its time I will do this swiftly.”


6. Two more favorite words of God’s, these for me to say:  “Thank You.”

He was serious when He told us to give thanks in everything.  When I choose to say thank you, about things I hate, or am hurt by, or confused by, I express to God that I believe that He is really God—in control, all powerful—and that He is good—He always is looking for ways to do good to me.  Those two words begin to change my perspective, and they seem almost magic as they open the door for God to work in the situation.


7. On my own I can do NOTHING!!!

When I walk in the power and anointing of the Holy Spirit, NOTHING is impossible for me.


8. God has made me a fire starter

—seeking to be kindling to start fires in hearts and minds.  It is so easy for me to settle for warm little blazes.  But His plans are so much bigger.  He says I can’t even imagine what He wants to do in and through me. He says repeatedly, ”Don’t settle.  Fan the flames.  Let the wind of My Spirit blow through you to spread the wildfires of my love and forgiveness everywhere.”


What about you?  What are some life truths that have sunk in for you?


c2011 Judy Douglass

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I love to start fires in hearts and minds, to ignite passion and excite compassion.  To open eyes and ears to what God is doing and saying.  To light fires under God’s children for reaching the lost and caring for the oppressed and opening doors for His daughters.

That’s why I began writing “Kindling” in January 2010.  In almost 12 months of life, Kindling has carried 72 posts.  They fall into categories like Becoming Kindling, True Followers and On My Knees.

Here are the top 10 posts—based on number of views, or number of comments, or my personal favorites.  Just click on the link for each one and fan the flames.

1.    Perspective at Any Season—my son’s encounter with a chain saw


2.    Are You a Dangerous Woman?— The Dangerous Woman Creed by Lynn Hybels


3.     My Lunch…My Life—a boy gave his lunch to Jesus


4.     The Circle of Life—in our families and in God’s family


5.    I Need My Space!—living with the time and space invaders in our lives


6.     Even the Camels—“Obil was over the camels.”  What is your calling?


7.     The End, The Beginning—the bittersweetness of endings and beginnings


8.     TALKing with God—having an honest conversation with God


9.     Nothing—like a newborn baby, we are totally dependent


10.     No Shrinking Back—what fears hold you back?


I always love to hear from you–please feel free to respond to any of these fireseeds.

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My friend Susan and I were sharing a room at a retreat.  I was reading Shadow of the Almighty:  The Life and Testament of Jim Elliot by Elizabeth Elliot.

Astounded at the depth and insight and commitment Jim Elliot expressed throughout his journals, I turned to Susan and said, “Why don’t my journals sound like this?”  I was especially startled at how often he mentions “having only a short life in which to serve God.”

I was touched and challenged repeatedly by his words.  They were Kindling to my spirit.   So I would like to share a few of them with you.  May they be fireseeds in your life.

Jim Elliot

He is no fool…

“He is no fool who gives what he cannot keep to gain what he cannot lose.”

“God preserve me from living a life that conforms to the general pattern.  To whom shall I go for counsel for a way of life?  To whom for example?  To thee Lord?  Yea , I come to thee.”

“Oh, Lord, you see the secret places in me.  If you see anything in me that is holding back the clear revelation of your will, uncover it to me, I pray.”

Have it all, Lord…

“Father take my life, even my blood, if thou wilt, and consume it with thine enveloping fire.  I would not save it, for it is not mine to save.   Have it Lord, have it all.  Pour my life as an oblation for the world.  Blood is only of value as it flows before thine altars.”

“I pray that the Lord might crown this year with His goodness and in the coming one give you a hallowed, dare-devil spirit in lifting the biting sword of Truth, consuming you with a passion that is called by the cultured citizen of Christendom ‘fanaticism’, but known to God as that saintly madness that led His Son through bloody sweat and hot tears to agony on a rude Cross—and Glory!”

“Father, make of me a crisis man. Bring those I contact to decision. Let me not be a milepost on a single road; make me a fork, that men must turn one way or another on facing Christ in me.”

“Wherever you are, be all there. Live to the hilt every situation you believe to be the will of God.”

…that I may burn for Thee.

“God, I pray Thee, light these idle sticks of my life, that I may burn for Thee.  Consume my life, my God, for it is Thine.  I seek not a long life, but a full one, like You, Lord Jesus.”

“Rest in this – it is His business to lead, command, impel, send, call or whatever you want to call it.  It is your business to obey, follow, move, respond, or what have you.”

“Oh, the fullness, pleasure, sheer excitement of knowing God on Earth!  I care not if I never raise my voice again for Him, if only I may love Him, please Him.  Mayhap in mercy He shall give me a host of children that I may lead them through the vast star fields to explore His delicacies whose finger ends set them to burning.  But if not, if only I may see Him, touch His garments, smile into His eyes — ah then, not stars nor children shall matter, only Himself.”

“Most laws condemn the soul and pronounce sentence.  The result of the law of my God is perfect.  It condemns but forgives.  It restores – more than abundantly – what it takes away

Leave the choice to Him…

“God always gives His best to those who leave the choice with him.”

“There is within a hunger after God, given of God, filled by God.  I can be happy when I am conscious that he is doing what He wills to do within.”

“As your life is in His hands, so are the days of your life. But don’t let the sands of time get into the eye of your vision to reach those who sit in darkness. They simply must hear.”

I must not think it strange if God takes in youth those whom I would have kept on earth till they were older. God is peopling Eternity, and I must not restrict Him to old men and women.”

“The will of God is always a bigger thing than we bargain for.”

“Saturate me with the oil of the Spirit that I may be aflame. But flame is often short-lived. Canst thou bear this, my soul? Short life? In me there dwells the spirit of the Great Short-Lived, whose zeal for God’s house consumed Him. ‘Make me Thy fuel, Flame of God.’”

Oh, Lord, set my heart on fire.  Ignite my spirit with Your holiness and Your passion.  May my life be kindling to start fires in the hearts and minds of all I encounter.

Philip James Elliot (October 8, 1927 – January 8, 1956) was a missionary to Ecuador, where he and his missionary friend–.Ed McCully, Roger Youderian, Peter Fleming Nate Saint–were martyred.

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