Today’s Illustration: The Wood Is Wet!

There are some situations where the ability to build a fire is critical to our survival. As human beings, we depend on maintaining a certain level of body heat. If the body drops to a core temperature of 85 degrees, the heart beats about two times a minute, and death is imminent.

Jack London’s classic novel, “To Build A Fire,” revolves around that survival skill.

The ability to build a fire is essential to being a survivor on “Survivor.”

Could you build a fire if it became necessary?

I think I could.  But maybe not!

Fire, oxygen, and an easily ignited fuel are all basic to building a fire.

Interestingly, the task requires beginning with some kind of “fire.” You must have matches, a lighter, or a way to create at least “a spark of fire,” such as a “flint and steel.”

Along with “fire,” you will need oxygen.  You have probably seen people blowing on that initial spark of fire to increase the presence of oxygen and disperse the CO2 being generated.

Then you need fuel, something that will burn and will burn easily.  You should begin with some dry “tinder,” some fine small brush or wood shavings,  and “kindling,” smaller pieces of wood that will form the foundation of a larger log fire.

However, the survival situation becomes more problematic if “the wood is wet.” Wet logs have to be heated hot and long enough to get rid of their water content before they will ignite. More dry “kindling” is needed to create enough heat to get even some of the logs burning! The initial kindling fire may burn out before the smallest logs are on fire.

What is true in nature has a counterpart with us in life and living.  Sometimes, “the wood is wet.”  Trying to spark a needed interest in this-or-that with others can be difficult — even if it is a matter of survival.

  • “You ought to give them a call; I hear that they are hiring.  It’s a good job!”
  • “Why not see if there is a class you can take to meet that requirement?”
  • “Why don’t you consider getting some outside help with your marriage?”
  • “I know someone who could give you some helpful insights or direction. I can call them and see if they would help.”
  • “Do you have a church home or a pastor you could talk to about it?”
  • “Did you talk to God about it yet? Why not pray about it first.”

Have you tried to help others during the survival situations of life? You have probably found out that at times, “the wood is wet.”  It will take a lot more “kindling” to build a fire.

That is also true regarding God’s working in our lives.  Sometimes, “the wood is wet,” and what the Lord is trying to say to us or do in our lives never really “takes off.”

Let me suggest picking up a Bible, reading a few “tinder verses” from Proverbs, Psalms, or the Gospels, doing that for a  few “kindling weeks,” and seeing if He can start a fire that will contribute to your survival.

As the Hymn states . . . .

It Only Takes A Spark, To Get A Fire Going
And Soon All Those Around, Can Warm Up In Glowing
That’s How It Is With God’s Love
Once You’ve Experienced It

I can assure you that Bible reading is another survival skill that is worth learning before and during the trials and tests that come upon us throughout our lives.

One thought on “Today’s Illustration: The Wood Is Wet!

  1. I’ve built a lot of fires, even winter camping in subzero with plenty of snow. Fires can be built in the rain (need some kind of cover). No fire takes when the wood is wet.


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