“I came to bring fire to the earth, and how I wish it were already kindled” ( Luke 12:49) What a sight to behold! Fire is not an image that often brings peace or calmness to mind. Yet Christ uses this image in Luke’s gospel. He wants an image that ignites, gets attention and spreads rapidly.
These days many say this is what Pope Francis’ Papacy is all about. He ignites the world with his presence, gets attention from Catholics and others alike, and every word he utter spreads rapidly around the globe. That’s the impact Christ wants his message to have even today- inspiring, hope-filled and life changing.
Christ’s blazing fire is simply our embracing God’s call to come home, receive His mercy for our past offenses, grant forgiveness to those who have hurt us, accept God’s gift of grace to begin life anew, and live with a bold determination to get it right from now on. Now wouldn’t that make a fine bonfire for all to notice?
Yet this is the unquenchable fire Jesus wants spread throughout creation. It is the story of God’s never ending affection and our unshakeable belief that we are his chosen friends. When we awaken this understanding of God’s love within us, our every action covers the earth with a bright, burning warmth and glow.
When we give Christ request our best efforts, like Pope Francis we, too, are kindling the fire Jesus wants burning on this earth. And we can be certain Jesus is satisfied.
“I came to bring fire to the earth, and how I wish it were already kindled” ( Luke 12:49)