Posted by: Jo | May 3, 2018

Fanning Our Gifts Into Flames

“For this reason I remind you to fan into flame the gift of God…”

(2 Timothy 1: 6)

FanFlames01Both my husband and I grew up in homes that had open fireplaces. My grandmother still had a stove that was heated through a wood fire and I can remember her sitting in front of the opening patiently toasting bread for us with a very long pronged fork, carefully turning the piece of bread from one side to the other until it was just the right shade of brown.  Delicious to eat!! Building the fire was a very important part of having a successful source of heat and then keeping that small spark going, fanning it, was essential.

Paul uses this beautiful example of keeping something very important alive, when he writes to encourage Timothy and the young Christian church he is leading, not to neglect the gifts that God had given them, so they no longer shine brightly, and are available to use for God’s glory, but to keep fanning them so they become mighty flames able to accomplish what God has designed them to be.

There are many verses about gifts in Scripture, the most beautiful one being how God gave us his one an only Son to be our Saviour;

“Thanks be to God for his indescribable gift!’ (2 Corinthians 9: 15)

but Paul assures us in Corinthians that everyone of us has personal gifts, given to us by the Father;

“…But each man has his own gift from God, one has this gift, another has that.” (1 Corinthians 7: 7)

FanFlames02Some of us mistakenly believe God must have overlooked us when he was giving out the gifts, but that is not true, just as each person is unique, so are our gifts and discovering those gifts becomes easier and easier the longer we walk closely with the Holy Spirit. Some of what would be described as small gifts can bring about amazing results when they are used to display God’s love to others.

One gift often overlooked as a “gift”, is prayer. Jesus graciously opened the door to the Father’s ear, so we can talk directly to the Creator of the Universe. We can fan this gift into a mighty flame as we pray for others and bring about miraculous happenings with the help of the Holy Spirit.

Again, we can go to Paul to read how he encourages the young churches to look carefully at their gifts (1 Corinthians 12 is a great chapter to delve into for Spiritual gifts, but also important it is for us to be able to see that we are one body with different parts having different jobs, but all parts working together for the good of the whole body.)

So how do we accomplish fanning our gifts into flames? Using them is the simple answer!  When we realise people like to share their problems with us, we realise we are good listeners and can be invaluable helping others. Practice good listening skills! Somebody told me a great acronym W.A.I.T. to remember (Why Am I Talking). If others tell you, how positive you are, practice encouraging those who need a hand up. FanFlames03Probably the best way to discover our gifts is to ask the Lord to show us how he would like to use us. When we realise the gifts come from him and we don’t take the credit, our gifts truly will burst into flame and we will remember where the gifts come from;

 “Every good and perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father…” (James 1: 17)




  1. Thank you, Jo’
    Good point It is good to keep our actions in perspective.


  2. When people praise us or thank us for doing something for them, we do tend to forget that we are just using the gifts God gave us for this purpose. You teach us to keep our actions in perspective Jo. Thank you.

    Liked by 1 person

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