Through Wind And Fire

December 2, 2017
by Don Lipsett

Proverbs 3:5-6 – Trust in the Lord with all your heart; do not depend on your own understanding. Seek his will in all you do, and he will show you which path to take. (NLT)

Here in British Columbia, Canada, the forest fires of this past summer were the worst in the history of the province. Over 1.2 million hectares of forest and pastureland, and many homes and businesses, were consumed. Livestock and wildlife were lost, thousands of people were evacuated, lives and livelihoods were disrupted, and many still suffer from the effects. Here is one part of the story.

Our fire, the Gustafsen fire, began on July 6th. It spread rapidly from just north of the town of 100 Mile House, burning homes in the 105 Mile residential area, and threatening those in the 103 Mile subdivision. Within four hours, it raced fourteen kilometres (almost nine miles) north to the very edge of 108 Mile Ranch, the large subdivision of over 700 homes and a number of businesses. All of these areas were evacuated, and the town of 100 Mile House was put on evacuation alert.

In 108 Mile, the fire took two homes. The smoke and heat were intense, and the high winds bore the fire down onto the subdivision. The first responders — fire fighters and police — were notified to pull back for their own protection. The Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP) officers who had just been relieved, gathered together at the detachment headquarters in 100 Mile. There the corporal told them that he had just been advised that the situation at the subdivision (where many of their own homes were) was now so dangerous that 108 Mile could not be saved: it had to be abandoned to the flames. Reserve Constable Clint Lange, retired from the RCMP and now pastor of Hillside Community Church, suggested that the one thing which could be done would be to pray. They all gathered in a huddle, and Pastor Clint asked God for mercy, and that He would stop the fire which no one could stop.

They prayed — and that was the moment when the wind abruptly ceased, then swung 180 degrees and started blowing from the opposite direction. The flames blew back on the already burnt forest — and went out. That alone saved 108 Mile Ranch.

How can this speak to us? God is good, and God is great. But as you and I know, sometimes, it's just plain hard to see God's hand in some events of our lives. Nonetheless, today's Scripture is true, as He goes with us through each day, along the paths of our lives.

Prayer: Our loving Father, Jesus our Saviour and Friend, Holy Spirit our Comforter, help us to trust in You and to know Your presence even through the trials of life. Amen.

About the author:

Don Lipsett <dllipsett@shaw.ca>

100 Mile House, British Columbia, Canada


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1 Comment

  • PresbyCan Feedback says:

    A good word, Don.


    Praise God in things!


    Praise God!
    (CA)


    The truth of this message is a reminder of God’s closeness during trials in life.


    This was a very uplifting reminder. We have a miracle-working God and He loves us with all His heart! Praise God!


    Don
    Thank you for your inspirational devotional!
    Much appreciated!


    Thank you for sharing the power of prayer. God is Good all the time.
    Blessings,
    (ON)


    Dear Don,
    I would like to share your devotional “Through Wind And Fire”.
    Thank you.


    Thank you, Don!
    This was a powerful and uplifting message to me today.
    Praise God from whom all blessings flow!


    Amazing! Truly mercy and a hearty dose of grace! What an absolute miracle! How terrible for those who lost everything, especially for those grieving for loss of life. Thank you for sharing this with us. Blessings.


    Amen Don, amazing how the hand of God works, but then again who was it again who still the wind and raging sea in that bible story?!
    Thanks for sharing.
    Blessings.


    Hi Don,
    I read your devotional this morning, and it is just amazing how prayer is answered sometimes.
    Thank you for writing.
    Blessings.


    A lot of people look for proof so they can believe. There is such great power in prayer and faith, especially when we group together and petition God. Proof that He listens happens every day to someone in such dramatic ways, we are all so blessed. Awesome story of faith that never fails to give us hope.


    Greetings Don,
    Many thanks for your devotional this morning. It speaks volumes of the greatness of our loving God and the power of prayer.
    Blessings,
    (B.C.)


    Thank you so much for this true story that we can easily equate with as we watched the horrific news last summer. Thank you for reminding us how powerful our prayers are when we put our trust in God. I belong to a prayer chain where we have been praying for a small boy through so many difficulties since birth. We are asking God for help once again and your prayer is so helpful to me! God Bless.


    Don! Prayers were sent to heaven daily when hearing my only daughter and her husband were ready to leave their home with all their neighbors to safety. It still causes me to tremble. Your devotional brought comfort to hear how not all was lost. How prayer changed the wind is a powerful lesson.
    God’s good will remains through it all!
    Blessings from above be with us all!


    Hi Don,
    Your devotional reminds me of a song my friend and I used to sing when we did services in Retirement Homes. It is called “I AM WITH THEE” and the chorus sums it up so well.
    “Through the FIRE, Through the Flood, I am covered by His Blood, I AM with thee”.
    While we no longer do these services the truth of the message stays with me through all of these years. Thank you for stirring it up in my memory.
    Bless you!


    Thank you, Don, for today’s wonderful Devotional. We too, here in Ontario suffered great losses and sadly, some loss of life, in our fires. People who prized their possessions more than their lives.
    Your touching stories reminds me of the story of Jesus asleep in a small boat crossing a stormy sea. When His followers woke Him pleading for help, fearing for their lives, He only uttered three words, “Peace, be still!” And the storm was over! This can still happen, when we earnestly pray. With God all things ARE possible! Amen.
    (Ontario)


    Hello Don.
    Thank you so much for sharing that miracle with us. We are so apt to despair instead of expecting our God to respond to our call for help.
    Blessings!


    Thank you so much, Don, for this impactful story of God at work in the midst of the fury of the fires in B.C. It’s a wonderful reminder of what is being accomplished by prayer around the world, and in my own life.
    On thinking of some health issues we were dealing with, I asked God to watch over us as we went through our day, and to keep us safe in our travels. Shortly afterward, we were involved in an accident, and almost immediately, my first question was of God … Why? But it wasn’t God’s fault. And He did keep us safe from injury, although our car did not fair so well.
    Often our prayers are not answered immediately, or in the manner in which we imagine, but we must believe the scripture that reminds us God has a plan for us, not to harm us, but to give us hope and a future.
    Ps. 139 reminds me that He is always there for us: (Verses 9 & 10)
    This whole psalm is inspiring and, when I fall victim to circumstance and begin to doubt, I’m glad He surrounds me with people like you who encourage and bring me back to His Word, to renew and strengthen my faith.
    May God bless you and yours.


    Thank you for sharing the power of prayer. God is Good all the time.
    Blessings,
    (ON)


    Thank you for your email. Yes, as my pastor told me, “This is God’s story, and it needs to be told.” I am sure you spent many a smokey day this summer in Salmon Arm.
    God bless and keep you, and I wish you a happy and blessed Christmas,

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