This past week we saw the devastation fire can inflict on a community. Over 2,000 houses and other structures were utterly destroyed in the wine country region of northern California. We ask you to include in your daily prayers the residents of these communities as they face the loss of loved ones and property. Many commented on the little warning they had and the total loss of belongings and cherished mementos they lost in this fire that seemed to come out of nowhere. Fire is a consuming force. It not only damages but also utterly destroys everything in its path. Thousands of humans battled this particular fire but could not stop its tremendous power to eviscerate these 2,000 structures. The people of the wine country lost much treasure this past week and some will be able to replace a small portion of it. Most of it is now gone forever. Photos, keepsakes and investments of gold, silver and cash were all burned away in a matter of minutes. The bible highlights the consuming power of fire and it speaks of a lake of fire which will destroy the enemy and his followers in the last days. It is also fire that will pave the way to recreate a new heaven and new earth. Fire so destructive it will eliminate all of the buildings on the planet as well as all of the satellites in orbit above the earth. Regarding treasure, the good book says to store up treasure in heaven rather than on earth where moth and vermin can destroy and thieves can steal. This week fire stole all of these peoples treasure they stored up in their houses. Sodom and Gomorrah were destroyed by fire and fire from heaven consumed the sacrifice provided by Elijah.
The only thing fire does not destroy is a bush referring to the bush Moses witnessed on fire when God spoke to him regarding the Israelites in Egypt.
Yet fire is also about rebirth. The vegetation in California prospers in fire as it grows back stronger and overcomes the blackness of the ground burned by the wildfire months ago. The earth will be reborn from fire as the New Jerusalem descends from heaven to become its new capital.
These 2,000 structures will be rebuilt and there will be a rebirth in Napa Valley. The memory and scorch marks of this fire will remain but will fade over time. The earth will be reborn in fire and the memory of loss and destruction in this world will also fade as well over a period of time as prosperity and joy displace the tearful past.
The residents of Napa will recover and move forward just like we who face our own fires and destruction every week. As long as God is part of our life, we will overcome the trials and tribulations and look forward to a day when death itself will be the last thing thrown into the fire and we will live and reign forever.