And Then I Saw the Smoke

A verse has been tumbling through my mind since I read it a
few days ago. One of the words was unexpected and I have been puzzling through
how it works. 
And then, while driving this week, I saw the smoke. A
towering four-story black smoke cloud tilted off-kilter from the horizon. The
rest of the world seemed normal and calm. Grassy hills mounded lazily to the
horizon. Cows and horses looked up stolidly as my car passed, and faint swirly
cirrus clouds stretched across the afternoon sky. 
The black smoke swelled and grabbed my attention. Gripping
the steering wheel, I stole quick glances off to the left, following the smoke
down to its source. Tangerine tongues of fire burned from miles away. Flashing
crimson and orange flames captured my focus
until the car drove over a ridge
and out of view. 
The verse I had been pondering clicked in my brain. “I will show myself holy through them in the sight of many nations,” stated the Godhead
to his prophet Zeke, sometime between 585 – 573 BC. I have heard of God showing
his glory through us, and definitely showing his love through us to the people
around us. But this concept of showing his holiness through us struck and
amazed me. 
The smoke on the afternoon horizon cleared my eyes
At first all I saw was the thick column of black smoke. It
stood out so differently from the surrounding horizon. It caught my attention,
and I turned to watch it more. The smoke led my eye naturally down to the
source. Molten orange and crimson fire danced hypnotically in my sight, and the
smoke was forgotten. All I wanted was to stare into the Light. 

Lord, help me to be smoke that stands out from the
surroundings and points to your Light. 
What verse have you been thinking about this week?

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  1. tandemingtroll on May 11, 2012 at 3:55 pm

    The kids and I going through the minor prophets, skipping Hosea because it is "R" rated and my boys are young and also Jonah, which is pretty familiar. You would think prophecies about the Messiah and the destruction of Isreal and Jerusalem would have little to do with our lives today, but in Amos, after Amos intercedes for Isreal twice before God, the "priests" accuse him of being disloyal to Isreal and a trouble-maker. God seemed to say to me, that the world will constantly be ignorant of all the good things that Christians do, sometimes deliberately ignoring it, sometimes just because God they don't know what COULD have happened.

    In Micah 1, after Micah describes the destruction that will come to Judah, he weeps and mourns for what will happen.

    Isn't that what we should be doing for our country? Interceding and mourning when we, as a nation, take one more step away from the God who established us and lifted us up?

  2. AmyAlves on May 11, 2012 at 4:21 pm

    I loved this. Your writing has become so real and beautiful lately! I've always liked you. :)But I can see this acceleration through your words lately. It's quite lovely! Thank you so much for sharing with me sister. May God pour His knowledge and blessings over you this weekend! ~ Blessings, Amy

  3. Jennifer Dougan on May 13, 2012 at 4:21 am

    Tandeming troll,

    It is amazing how raw the Bible is in so many places, huh? I love that we can't shock God.

    Hm! That part in Amos where he is called a trouble-maker sounds interesting, you're right. I'll have to read that again soon. I'm making my way there again soon — finishing up Ezekiel now. Micah too, hmm…

    Fun to hear what you are reading and thinking about, thank you. How are those prayer request issues going too, by the way?


  4. Jennifer Dougan on May 13, 2012 at 4:24 am


    Thank you for your kind encouragement and compliments here! It's always helpful to get feedback, so thank you. Thanks to God then.

    I enjoy these times of "talking" back and forth over the months here too.

    Have a great week.


  5. LOLITA on May 22, 2012 at 4:25 am

    No one is ever late, if one still has the sight of the black smoke.

    Thanks for the lovely post, Jen.

    I will be thinking about this too, like "being holy examples" for God-to show to people and make them know who God is through us. I have been made Holy by the shedding of Jesus' blood-and I should live up to it.

    Mighty hard, but He will be the one to make us, let us and urges us on.

    God, help us focus not on the smoke but rather at the source which is the fire. Amen.

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