Ignite a fire within

Cover of "Miss Rumphius"
Cover of Miss Rumphius

Walk with the dreamers,

the believers,

the courageous,

the cheerful,

the planners,

the doers,

the successful people with their heads in the clouds and their feet on the ground.

Let their spirit ignite a fire within you to leave this world better than when you found it.

–Wilferd Peterson

The sermon at my church yesterday nudged my thoughts and inspired me to finish this post that I started musing about many weeks ago.  She (my pastor) left us with this thought:  Go light up your world by being beautiful!  She used the text from Matthew 5:14-16 “You are the light of the world.  A city built on a hill cannot be hidden.  No one after lighting a lamp puts it under the bushel basket, but on the lampstand, and it gives light to all in the house.  In the same way, let your light shine before others, so that they may see your good works and give glory to your Father in heaven.”  She told us that the (Greek “kalos“) word for “good” in that last sentence could also be translated as BEAUTIFUL.  In other words, we are light to the world by doing beautiful things.

One of my favorite Christian images is the notion of light overwhelming the darkness. It only takes ONE candle to shed light, no matter how much darkness there is.

The light shines in the darkness, and the darkness has not overcome it.

John 1:5

She (our pastor) sang a song I had never heard before called “Go Light Your World” by Chris Rice.  One line really caught my ears:

Carry your candle, run to the darkness — 

It struck me that it isn’t enough to be holding that candle (and not hiding it under the proverbial bushel) but that we should run TO the darkness.  Kind of a scary thought.  I am game to hold that candle for sure, but I’m not so sure about the whole “running to the darkness” idea.  I’ve been in some really dark places.  Have you ever been on one of those cave tours when they turn off the lights to let you see how dark really dark can be?  Yep.  I have.   You can put your hand in front of your own face and not see anything at all.  Don’t get me started on the bats, either!  Yikes.  There is also the darkness of camping in a remote area far from city lights, but the stars and moon are usually so bright that it isn’t really that dark.

Here is a link to a video in case you’ve never heard it either:

…for at one time you were darkness, but now you are light in the Lord. Walk as children of light

Ephesians 5:8

We were not just IN the darkness, we were darkness.  Now we ARE light, not just IN the light.  That is a lovely image.

After the service, my church choir shared all the songs that were running through our heads during the sermon!  🙂  You light up my life (sung by Debby Boone), You are the light of the world (from Godspell), This little light of mine (gospel children’s song written by Henry Dixon Loes), You are so beautiful to me (sung by Joe Cocker), What makes you beautiful (sung by One Direction), Oh what a beautiful morning (from Oklahoma!), Beautiful Dreamer (by Stephen Foster) — among others.

One of my all time favorite children’s books is Miss Rumphius written and illustrated by Barbara Cooney.

Miss Rumphius by Barbara Cooney (image from wikimedia)

Link to watch a preschool teacher read the book aloud:

Miss Rumphius is a story about a women’s life.  She does the most difficult thing of all; she makes the world a more beautiful place.

I’ve spent quite a bit of time thinking about how I can make the world a more beautiful place.

These words

— from the quotes and songs above and from the Miss Rumphius book —

— somehow all of this feeds that desire of mine to “aspire to inspire” and the desire to appreciate beauty —

— the desire to ignite a fire within

— not only within myself —

but also within those I love and within those who cross my path.


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I am a pianist, musician, music teacher, choir director, mother, wife, daughter, sister, cousin, sister-in-law, friend, neighbor. I enjoy music (of course!), quilting, sewing, beading, traveling, kayaking, camping, biking, hiking, gardening, knitting, scrapbooking, cooking, reading, poetry, drinking good coffee, and having fun with family and friends. NOTE -- Creative Commons License: All work of The Tromp Queen (quirkyjazz, aka Jill) is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 4.0 Unported License.

7 thoughts on “Ignite a fire within”

  1. On the subject of bats in the cave: apparently the nearest child is appropriate protection. When the bat flew at her, she screeched and hid behind a small girl. Sometimes the light comes in the form of a child willing to defend you from beasts….

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