“This girl is on fire”

Dr. Robin H. Kimbrough

Dr. Robin H. Kimbrough

We all remember Alesha Keys’ rendition of ‘This Girl is on Fire’ performed for Michelle Obama, and how the lyrics remind us of how powerful women are—and how women like Michelle Obama display this power even through difficult circumstances. Women, we need to be on fire. We all are the woman who walks with flames in her eyes, lights up the night, and lets the negative things around her burn, burn, burn. This girl is on fire.

We remember the story of Vashti in the first chapter of Esther. We all recall how she had her husband throw two lavish parties for their kingdom, one for the women and one for the men. King Xerxes, under the influence of alcohol (and probably under the influence of his male friends) demanded that Queen Vashti parade nude at his party. He wanted everyone to see that his wife was on fire. Queen Vashti refused her husband, because she knew that the flames of her fire were not physical, but came from within. She refused to disrespect herself in this way, even if it was at her husband’s request.

Although this decision caused her to lose her ranking as the queen, this did not put out her fire. We learn from Vashti and King Xerxes that a woman’s fire does not depend on who she is on the outside, but who she is on the inside. Sisters, we need to realize this as we go through this life. Mac makeup cannot light our fire. Maybelline cannot keep our fire going.

Covergirl cannot make our fire burn. Our fire comes from loving God. The more we know God in our lives, and love ourselves, no man can exploit us or convince us that our bodies, our gifts, and our spirits should be paraded around like objects.

We do not have to get on the dance floor in different types of positions like Ciara at the BET awards to her hit song ‘Body Party’ and live our lives setting men on fire. We have our own fire that we need to let burn. This girl is on fire. When Vashti refuses the King, she is just letting her fire of self-love and self-respect burn. There are too many women who think that some other person can keep their fire burning. So they engage in unhealthy relationships in which they settle for less than they deserve, because they think the relationship sets them on fire.

The truth is these types of relationships extinguish the fire. Every time, this sister tries to start the fire, her King Xerxes comes right along trying to blow out. Don’t we know that our fire can burn all by itself? As Keys reveals, it’s a lonely highway sometimes, but the fire still burns. This girl is on fire. Sisters, we cannot be ashamed of our fire. We cannot walk around as if we are not on fire. We cannot permit circumstances to beat us down. We cannot allow people to tell us that we are not on fire. We cannot allow other people, who are fireproof, to put out our fires.

Just because they cannot catch on fire, does not mean they have the right to take our fire away from us. Sisters, we need to keep one another’s fire burning by supporting one another. Instead of saying that Vashti should have taken that walk into the banquet, encourage that sister and let her know that she did the right thing. No matter how much the devil tries to throw water on our fires or suck the oxygen out, our fires will continue to burn. This girl is on fire. Some of us may think that we are not as strong as Vashti, and that our fires have turned into a flicker. Be encouraged. If we allow Jesus Christ through the Holy Spirit, he will come along and add fuel to our flames. This girl is on fire.