This weekend hubby decided to burn a pile of cast off wood from our house remodel/restoration project. The pile consisted of old ceiling lathe, roofing wood, and other cast off pieces. He had a hose running out to the pile to keep watering on the edge, to help keep it under control.
I was cleaning inside the house and started a load of laundry. What I didn’t realize is how severely my water usage would impact his water pressure. It reduced the hose to a trickle. Immediately hubby told me to turn off the washing machine. But within minutes the fire was stronger than he wanted. He came banging on the house for me to come help. I grabbed a shovel to put dirt on the fire and the dog buckets with drinking water to help.
Our neighbor’s cousin was working on his tractor at the barn and he came over to help carry buckets of water. We used our neighbor’s spigot for water and filled the buckets again and again. A friend on the volunteer fire department came over to help us out. As he approached our house he saw the cloud of smoke and thought we should call 911. The smoke was really steam from the water, the fire now being under control again.
It took another few hours of diligent watchfulness before my hubby was sure it was not going to happen again. The pile is now ash and nothing is in danger.
The thing about smoke is how much it can tell a seasoned person about the fire. The color, the way it plumes and billows, the smell, all of these things, help them assess their situation. The fire may be obscured by the smoke, but it’s down at the very bottom. Until that is fully put out, the smoke will not go away.
Sin, addiction, and other battles are the same way. Until they are fully addressed the danger is always present. We can think we have control over our issues, but one slight change can actually cause it to go wild in a moment’s notice.
It can be a song, a memory, even a person’s name can trigger the blaze to become catastrophic. We all know things can be rebuilt, but the loss, the damage, the pain and hurt caused by the flames can never be fully healed. There will always be scars. I have many scars from tumbles and falls, cuts and scrapes, in my life. The scars from burns are very different.
The skin is shriveled, distorted, no amount of time or therapy will ever return it to what it once was before the burn. That is the kind of damage an unresolved, uncontrolled sin or addiction can cause.
Best Beloved, while our hearts and souls can be restored by Christ – and yes our bodies sometimes too, please recognize the darkness and brokenness you have in your life and seek the help you need- no matter how humbling- before your fire burns out of control and the damage is irreparable.