The Inward Burning

"Prayer seemed to be natural to me, as the breath by which the inward burnings of heart had vent." -Jonathan Edwards


I love this quote from the famous revivalist, Jonathan Edwards. It presents prayer as an unstoppable force that cannot be contained by someone who is filled with the Spirit of Intercession. 

Let me remind you that Jesus came to baptize us with fire, and scripture clearly describes our God as a fire that consumes. If a fire is fed the right fuel, it doesn’t stop, decrease, pull back, or go out—it fully overtakes and grows (see Luke 3:16 and Hebrews 12:29).

If the Holy Spirit dwells in you, then praying is going to happen more and more. The two are inseparable. However, it’s possible to smother a fire with heavy damp rags—likewise, we can quench the Spirit of God with the heavy burdens of this world and the soggy rags of human philosophy.  

The Apostle Paul writes, “Do not quench (suppress or subdue) the Holy Spirit” (1 Thessalonians 5:18). If you connect the dots, you can begin to diagnose your spiritual condition by the frequency and urgency in your prayers. If they are lacking, then you may be in danger of suppressing the Holy Spirit with activity He never intended for you. On the other hand, if you are fueling the Spirit of God, then your prayer life will be ablaze with passion, power, and frequency.

So how is your fire? Has it been reduced to just a few small embers? If that is how you feel, I have hope for you! It only takes someone to breath on those coals to ignite them again! God is the Breath of Life and He is hovering over you right now, longing to breath on you and reignite the once burning flames of love. Just ask (see Matthew 7:7-8)!

Most likely, if you are reading this, your prayer life is far from being in ashes. You’re probably closer to a raging fire, hungry to consume more and more of the things of God. I want to encourage you to spread that fire around today. Go out and ignite others for Christ (see Luke 11:33).

Let’s pray: Father God, breathe on me and stoke the flames of love. Stir me for the things of God until I start a raging wild fire of holy love in my family, city, and state. In Jesus name, amen.