The tale of the phoenix is a mythological bird that was engulfed in flames and reduced to ashes. But a new, more glorious, fiery red and gold bird rises from the ashes stronger with a beautiful song.
There are things in our lives that the Lord allows to be engulfed and reduced to ashes. Our misconceptions, our arrogance, our insecurities, our lack of faith...the list goes on. Whatever the "thing" is, it does not go up in flames and then not get replaced, it's always replaced. But the key is to be careful of what rises. What rises will cause a revolution in your life, so it's vital that what rises is something fiery red and gold, stronger, with a beautiful song to sing.
I can look back over the past few years and see smoldering piles in my life and I can see what rose. Some is just my flesh rising stronger and rearing it's head further (things like distrust of people, loss of faith in spiritual leaders and the church system or self-reliance) and these are the things that have such repercussions (to be dealt with by more fire, I'm sure). But other piles have burned so well and so evenly that there was nothing left and the only thing left to rise was Christ.
It's the perfect two-way picture. Because he is truly the only one that has ever risen again after death. And when we truly die to ourselves, he is what rises in us.
And so from piles such as Fear: where will the money come from or Anger: why did you choose us to go through this or Lack of Faith: how will this all turn out OK - those are the piles lately that I see Christ rising from in my life. Faith Rises. Trust Rises. Hope Rises.
After the piles are burned they don't matter. You don't have to carry around the ashes of what happened or what you used to think or believe or what someone did or didn't do. It's what rises that matters. It's what rises that people see.
What is the phoenix in your life?
What song are you singing?