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Igniting a Fire Inside Your Heart

I didn’t understand the concept of a spiritual fire until my second semester of college. After indulging my sinful nature, the entire first semester, inside I felt like the popular Foreigner song “As Cold as Ice.” Despite warnings from older Christian friends, I had my own prodigal son experience, chasing popularity and the party scene. When you live a lie for three months, I began to feel dead inside or as Pink Floyd once sang, “Comfortably Numb.”

And he [Abram] believed in (trusted in, relied on, remained steadfast to) the Lord, and He counted it to him as righteousness (right standing with God), Genesis 15:6.

After most of my floor funked out, there wasn’t as many distractions so I began to turn back to God. This spiritual U-Turn began at James Madison University during a Fellowship of Christian Athletes Retreat. My roommate for the weekend was the quarterback of Delaware’s football team. Despite his size and stature, Dave had a great heart and welcomed me with open arms. Following Friday nights Icebreaker, my heart was receptive to the people I met and speakers which followed.

For His divine power has bestowed upon us all things that [are requisite and suited] to life and godliness, through the [[d]full, personal] knowledge of Him Who called us by and to His own glory and excellence (virtue). By means of these He has bestowed on us His precious and exceedingly great promises, so that through them you may escape [by flight] from the moral decay (rottenness and corruption) that is in the world because of covetousness (lust and greed), and become sharers (partakers) of the divine nature, 2 Peter 1:3-4.

Like a series of building blocks, each session tied together, sparking a sensation in my heart that I had never experienced before. As Saturday night led into early Sunday morning, students gathered in a conference room for an open mic. One by one, athletes shared about how God touched them, reflecting upon Bible studies and keynote speakers. Just as Abram experienced a spiritual turning point in his life, this was the moment I made Jesus the Lord of my life, Romans 10:9-11. The Holy Spirit ignited a fire inside my heart that still burns today, prompting a stutterer to face my fear of speaking in public. Before graduating college, this spiritual fire sparked a miracle, healing me from my stammering past. While I’m still a sinner, this spiritual fire is real and still burns.

by Jay Mankus


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