“He will baptize you with the Holy Spirit and fire.” — Luke 3:16
We have a colloquial phrase in American English: “baptism by fire.” I have no doubt that it’s based on exactly this biblical passage, although with a slightly different meaning.
Do I actually want to be baptized by fire?
The Holy Spirit, sure, because I don’t expect that to be painful. But fire is incredibly painful – one of the worst experiences a human can have.
Fire is used to turn raw ingredients into food, and iron into steel. So fire applied to my life might yield incredibly positive changes. But I admit that I’m fearful of going through that change.
It’s the same fear that I have of death, I expect. Yet it’s the same incredibly positive change.
Holy Spirit, help me to have faith and work through my fears.
Then I remember how often Jesus started ministering with: Be not afraid.