Yeah this sounds like bad advice.
Most moms would tell their kids, “Don’t play with fire!”
The title of this new book “Play With Fire”, by Bianca Juarez Olthoff, is about the fire of the Holy Spirit, and the transforming fire of suffering that refines us into pure gold.
Bianca tells her story from a child up through her life in her 20’s. She tells about her struggle to believe God through her suffering and her family’s suffering. She tells about doubting God and being angry with God. She ends with transformation later in her life.
Her story is compelling. I like the way she links what she is thinking with quotes from the Bible. She shows by example how the Bible is relevant to anything we go through in our lives. She seems to relate closely to the Israelites wandering in the desert for 40 years after being freed from slavery in Egypt. She keeps coming back to that story, and the difficulty the Israelites had trusting God.
In the chapter on “Community”, Bianca uses the Bible story of Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego, to explain the transforming power of fire. She says, “In the fire, the very presence of God was revealed.” Bianca says that the ultimate promise of God is the Holy Spirit.
I don’t know about you, but I did not grow up knowing about the Holy Spirit.
It is only in recent years that I have had an urging to find out more about the Holy Spirit. I search out books like this one to learn more, and hopefully to find out how the Holy Spirit can work in me.
This book gives me hope…
that the Holy Spirit can work in my life, without requiring me to do amazing miracles. Bianca shows through her life, that the Holy Spirit works in our lives even in the everyday things like forgiveness, hope against all odds, and provision when there is none visible. Bianca has seen that “what is empty can be filled”; “what is broken can be mended”; and “what is divided can be multiplied”. It is the power of the Holy Spirit.
All this is certainly enough reasons to read this book, but there is another section in the book, that I found useful. The Appendix has a list of 25 spiritual gifts with a definition and the corresponding Scripture reference. I wasn’t expecting that, but I am so glad Bianca included it in her book!
To find out more about the book or to purchase it, click on “Play With Fire”.