The Burning Altar by Bibi Asher Benson

“It has been a long time Mrs B. but you do not look good. Are you alright?” asked madam Angela. She was actually surprised by the sudden appearance of Mrs. B to her home. She knew all that the latter did  during her trial period. All the same, she felt concerned by the look of her church member.

The Burning Altar by Bibi Asher Benson

Mrs B. looked unsure of herself, glancing from side to side. She was obviously feeling embarrassed because she only nodded her head in response to her hostess’ question. Madam Angela felt very concerned and put her arm across Mrs. B’s shoulders; as if that was a signal, Mrs. B let out a sob and the tears rained from her eyes while her shoulders shook uncontrollably.

“But you look far from alright my dear. What could possibly be the matter Mrs. B are you ill?”
“Where do I begin?
‘She sniffed. “I saw what you went through but all I did was laugh behind your back. Even when I saw things getting better for you, I still scorned you saying it was temporary and soon you will return to your terrible situation. Now look at me, my situation in worse and everyone has turned their back on me. Imagine that it is you of all people that is sympathetic to me. Indeed it is true that ‘let him that thinketh he standeth take heed lest he fall’. without a doubt, it is my turn to chew hard nut”.

“It is alright. Forgiveness is the first thing a believer in Christ should live by. I know all that happened and I forgive you. Maybe I should even be thanking you because your treatment of me made me realize that God is my only help. So I turned fully to Him and He showed Himself mighty in my home. Truly, my help is in the name of the Lord. I will lift my eyes unto the Lord from whence come my help. You have to do the same as well”.

“Madam Angela, I desperately need this testimony of yours for my home please. It appears that everything that happened to your family is replicating in mine but on a higher scale. I have been praying and asking God for help but it appears there is something wrong with my prayer. How did you get back you home and peace please? How did your family get past the rough patch?”

Madam Angela excused herself to  get a glass of water and juice for her guest and then settled down to narrate the path she took to healing with her family.

Here is her story. When things got really rosy for Madam Angela’s family, they began to believe that whatever they wanted happened at their say-so.  They increasingly found more and more excuses to skip the family altar time.  The children claimed they needed more time to study to make excellent grades befitting of their new  family status. They even began to cheat and join bad groups in school. 

Their father on his own part became very busy at work, courting promotion and higher pay while also pursuing a side hustle, to ensure that the family’s lofty standard of living did not drop. That way they would remain the highest donors in church and continue to wine and dine with the creme-de-la-creme of the society. That reputation was very important. As is wont to happen, before long he met and made friends with those who made him believe that occasional indulgences in lies and immorality did no harm. 

Madam Angela on her part became snobbish and selective of those she associated with believing that the power of their hands got them all they acquired. That way she found herself moving with vain society women whose husbands were rich and who treated church as social point of contact. They saw nothing wrong with their new way of life; it was commensurate with their new status - level don change, according to the colloquial language of the locale. 

The fire at the family altar died completely till only ashes were left. Even that began to thin out as the wind of vanity kept blowing on them. The landmark of the altar disappeared. Church attendance became an occassional  trip - either when there is donation to be made, a dignitary was coming to church or when they had “time on their hands”. God is bringing the opportunities, they could not possibly pass them up and so they have to use them well - that was their thought. (Deuteronomy 8:17-18). They thought their hard work brought the wealth.

As this narration was going on, Mrs. B. could see her family in the picture painted by madam Angela. She could fully assess what had been happening in her family from the outside looking inside. Her had moved God to a corner of the house as well, that is if He still had a place there. They now paid lip service to the faith and like madam Angela once did, they all forgot that wealth hath wings and that without God we can do nothing. The branch cannot survive being broken from the Vine.

Madam Angela continued “One day we got a report that my son was caught with the gang that smoked weed in school and he was among the 3 boys that broke into the principal’s office to steal examination questions. He got expelled. My daughter had just been suspended for parading some junior class students naked in front of their dormitory as punishment for not greeting her. I could not believe it! My daughter has always been humble and my son cannot possibly smoke, talk less of weed. God what is happening in my family? I waited for my husband to return to we could go to the school together but instead I got a call from a police station to come bail my husband. What did he do? He beat up a lady he was dating and transacting business with because he discovered she had been cheating him and keeping the money meant for their client for herself. When the client came calling because the money was now up to the tune of 15 million, the lady went underground. This has been going on and he never mentioned it to me. That day he had gone to drown his sorrow at their usual bar and he saw the lady and beat her unconscious. Going to a bar at a time like this was a clear evidence of how far we had drifted away. Should I get angry that he never shared with me, or that he was cheating on me? I had to shove it all down and rush to the police station. In order to release my husband and pay off the client so that we could close the case, we had to pay a lot of money. This was when we began to sell off things.

My son had to get back to school and my daughter as well. All the things that raised our shoulders and swelled. That was when I really went on my knees. I asked God why all this was happening. He asked me to go to my family altar. I countered that I was at the altar. He told me there was no fire and so there was no altar, that even the ashes were gone. He Holy Spirit led me to Leviticus chapter 6 verse 12 reminding me that the altar must burn continually”

She gathered every member of her family that day and shared the revelation she received.  “The family altar fire must be rekindled. The fire must be burning on the altar without fail. We must start now and  with repentance.”

That was how madam Angela’s family got restored, when they rekindled the fire in the family altar and kept it burning.

“The most miraculous thing about this restoration was that the school recalled my children and forgave them. My husband got another promotion and my business suddenly picked up again. My children;s grades are also beginning to get better. Because of the burning altar in my home, it even appears like we never went through that horror. Everyone keeps saying ‘ I don’t even know what happened to me’ This burning altar is the most important aspect of our living today because God meets us there and makes everything alright.

“Go back and rekindle the fire you allowed die. THE BURNING ALTAR in your home will resolve your situation. And when you rekindle it, keep it burning as stated in Leviticus 6 verse 12.”
Mrs. B jumped up with so much joy and energy because her heart witnessed to her that she has got the answer she sought. She prayed all the way home. She called her family came together just like madam

Angela did and no sooner had the Altar fire began to burn again than the restoration in her home began. She put a sign on her front door which said THE BURNING ALTAR - Leviticus 6 : 12 because she did not want any body in the family to ever forget to keep the altar fire burning. She also did it as a way to witness to people who have not known Christ and those families who do not keep family devotion and altar in their home. And she always says to everyone who cared to listen - come to THE BURNING ALTAR.

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