The Fire Keeper - Part One
Matthew 5:14-16 I14 “You are the light of the world—like a city on a hilltop that cannot be hidden.15 No one lights a lamp and then puts it under a basket. Instead, a lamp is placed on a stand, where it gives light to everyone in the house.In the same way, let your good deeds shine out for all to see, so that everyone will praise your heavenly Father.
This is the story of Bergismeyer who was tasked with sitting on the tower of signal. This tower was positioned just far enough away from the village to give the villagers enough time to close the gates in the case of an invasion from a neighboring country. The tower was erected to do ONE thing and that was to warn the people of impending danger with a signal fire.
Bergismeyer, who was chosen to man the signal tower had worked hard to prove his worth by going through a series of tests and had come out passing every test with flying colors. There was a big ceremony to encourage him as they drove him out to the tower. With provisions Bergismeyer would stay in the tower for a period of 30 days and at the end he would receive a fully paid for farm of 10 acres. The village took very seriously who manned the tower and knew their very lives depended on the vigilance of the one who would man the tower.
As they approached the tower Bergismeyer noticed that it was very tall and he asked one of the men with him why it was so tall. The man replied that the tower not only served as a warning to the people of impending danger, but also warned the invading country that this country was ready and willing to fight and prepared for war. The tower was tall enough to be seen by both, the man replied and the invading country knew they were not as strong as the country who built the tower, but felt if they could catch them off guard could defeat them with as surprise attack. So Bergismeyer proceeded to jump in the basket that would haul him to the top of the tower. Ten, twenty, thirty, forty feet the basket climbed until it came to the top and stopped. To Bergismeyer's surprise the man he was replacing was pacing back and forth from the front to the back. The young man laughingly said "Whatcha looking for?" To which the man replied "I must stand ready for any attack at any time. There are too many lives at stake and they are depending on me." The young man thought, "Wow. This is overkill. I think it would be ok to relax until you see the enemy on the horizon and then light the fire." The fire keeper looked the new recruit over and said "Kinda young aren't you?" Bergismeyer didn't like being underestimated and fired back "I can handle this job easy!" Then the fire keeper gave him his instructions. 1. Keep the wood dry and cover it completely when it rains. 2. Keep a fresh load of kindling ready to start the fire and make sure your torches are lit and ready. 3. Plan out a schedule of ten minute naps and follow that schedule faithfully. 4. Be constantly either looking at the other countries border or looking to our village. Never stop walking and watching except when taking your ten minute nap. So the fire keeper got in the basket and they let him down to get in the wagon below and go back to the village. The young man watched them pull away and looking longingly at the village, wondering what all the rules were for. To which the old fire keeper yelled out "Remember rule number 4." Bergismeyer started his pacing and watching and took his turn in the fire tower and became the beacon for the village protection.
The end of Part One. Part two of the story will post tomorrow.