Monday, August 26, 2013

Nothing Like A Good Grease Fire To Motivate One To Clean The Oven!

Today I put some chicken nuggets in the oven for the girls' lunch.  I was sitting in the living room and after about five minutes, I noticed it smelled like smoke.  I went to the kitchen to investigate and I saw that smoke was pouring out of the oven vent.  What in the world?!!!

I opened the oven door just in time to witness the foil I had lining the bottom of the oven burst into flame! Aaaaaaaaaahhhhhhhhhh!  FIRE!  Cue that moment of panic when your heart jumps up in the back of your throat.  I go to the sink and start soaking towels to throw into the oven as the hubby grabs a pair of tongs to remove the flaming foil.  As he takes the foil to the sink, I toss the towels into the inferno because fortunately I remembered in my panic that you smother a grease fire:-)

Crisis averted.  Fire out, hands shaking, saying a little prayer of thanks.  What would have happened if I hadn't been there right when the fire started?  What if I had waited another minute before investigating?  I think someone was watching over my kitchen today.

I look at TheMostAwesomeHusbandInTheWorld and he says to me, "Oh yeah.  I forgot that when I reheated those ribs the other night they kind of made a mess."  Hmmmm.  I was wondering why pie filling (which is what I remember recently boiling over) would have caught things are making more sense.  

Well, I suppose the oven was due for a thorough scrubbing.  Just hasn't planned on putting it on today's to-do list.  Thanks for providing the extra motivation, Dear:-)  Love you to the moon and back!

Wednesday, August 7, 2013

When God Answers

Every once in a while I become acutely aware of the human condition.  In other words, our time on this earth is finite and not one of us is getting out of here alive in the end.  The human race has a 100% mortality rate.  I realize some may accuse me of being morbid for such a line of thought, but nonetheless, it is one I cannot seem to indefinitely avoid.

Most of the time I am able to combat any feelings of fear or worry with my faith and belief that Jesus Christ is my Lord and Savior and I know where I will be spending eternity when my Heavenly Father calls me home.  However, recently I couldn't shake the thought, "What if there isn't anything else?  What if this is all there is?"  For days I felt unsettled and disturbed.

Worry over things you cannot change will make you sick.  Can any one of you by worrying add a single hour to your life? (Matthew 6:27)  I had a tight feeling in my chest that I could not shake.  My mind was continually going back to the "what if's."  I would look at my husband or my children and feel sadness instead of joy.  I would wonder, "When my life as I know it comes to an end, is there anything more?  Will I be with the people I love so dearly ever again?"  I was having an internal argument with myself.  I have been standing firm in my faith for many years, but I felt like my mind was under attack.  I was filled with a sense of uncertainty that I cannot recall feeling ever before in my adult life.  Never did I truly doubt my spiritual convictions, but the uneasiness continued to simmer just below the surface.

For days I prayed.  I called upon God to give me the peace that I usually take for granted.  I begged him to allow me to feel the presence of His Holy Spirit.  I cried out for Him to ease the distress that was gripping my heart.  I lay awake, tired but unable to retire the churning turmoil in my own mind.  I finally opened my Bible and began flipping pages.  I would read random Psalms, searching for one that would be a salve to my soul.  I found myself unsuccessful.  I was not finding the right verses.

I prayed, "God, please!  I need you to give me what my heart needs to get through this uncertainty.  I know Jesus really lived.  I know He really died. I know He died for me.  Please give me a Psalm that will speak the truth to me right now."  I opened my Bible one more time.

Psalm 39:4-13
“Show me, Lord, my life’s end
    and the number of my days;
    let me know how fleeting my life is.
 You have made my days a mere handbreadth;
    the span of my years is as nothing before you.
Everyone is but a breath,
    even those who seem secure.
 “Surely everyone goes around like a mere phantom;
    in vain they rush about, heaping up wealth
    without knowing whose it will finally be.
 “But now, Lord, what do I look for?
    My hope is in you.
 Save me from all my transgressions;
    do not make me the scorn of fools.
 I was silent; I would not open my mouth,
    for you are the one who has done this.
 Remove your scourge from me;
    I am overcome by the blow of your hand.
 When you rebuke and discipline anyone for their sin,
    you consume their wealth like a moth
    surely everyone is but a breath.
 “Hear my prayer, Lord,
    listen to my cry for help;
    do not be deaf to my weeping.
I dwell with you as a foreigner,
    a stranger, as all my ancestors were.
 Look away from me, that I may enjoy life again
  before I depart and am no more. 
I read this and felt peace.  To see how King David faced down his own mortality and human limitation, it calmed my spirit.  It seems he was feeling some of the same things I had been experiencing.  These verses aren't exactly light and fluffy.  They aren't happy-go-lucky, all hearts and roses.  This passage has some sting in it, but it brought relief to my heart.  I once again saw that God's Scriptures are living, breathing, relevant truths that speak right into my life.  It has the power to uplift me, to convict me, to reassure me, to teach me, to pour life into my tired soul.  I am convinced that when I pray for guidance, He will never fail to provide it through His glorious Word.  

I could not tell you why this was the Scripture I needed in that moment.  I don't know exactly why it gave me such peace.  I do know that I am now sleeping soundly and my mind is at ease.  A few days after I found resolution in my heart,  I learned there had been a death in my family.  I am saddened to say goodbye to a kind man who was blessed with 99 years of life.  Had I not already resolved the turmoil I had been going through, I don't know how this news would have hit me.  As it is, I know I am only saying, "Goodbye for now," not "Goodbye forever."  Praise be to God for providing peace and understanding, especially in times of grief.