Wednesday, December 02, 2015

Some of you may have already seen my Facebook post from last Friday concerning the incineration of my beloved shed… and all of it’s contents!  I will be meeting with my insurance adjuster later this morning and hope for a silver lining around this smoke cloud. Anyway, I thought I would share “the rest of the story”, as Paul Harvey would say back in the day!  
I hate to admit it but what started the fire was me. Yes, I started the fire.  Now, this wasn’t arson or anything like that but purely a careless accident. The day of the fire was Black Friday so we were heading out for breakfast with our daughter and son-in-law over on the North Shore. Before leaving we did a little cleanup of the house. I dutifully vacuumed, took out the trash, and then cleaned out the fireplace. The fire from the previous weekend (5 days earlier) was long out and appeared totally cold. I placed the ashes about 6 ft from my shed where I have been dumping dirt, clippings, rocks, etc. for several years trying to build it up for a future lean-to. Well, we merrily drove off to enjoy the morning, oblivious to the fact that there were some embers in those ashes.  The embers must have started the leaves on fire, which spread up under the shed, which caught on fire, and burned nearly to the ground, with everything in it! When I received the news of what had happened I was shocked. I couldn’t figure out what had happened. But later that evening it hit me like a ton of bricks. The ashes where the only likely source of ignition and therefore I had caused the fire. I was so upset with myself and ashamed with what had happened. All that night I tossed and turned thinking about it, feeling terrible. Fortunately I got over the shame and have accepted that it was just and accident and that the insurance will cover just about everything that was lost. And now, as I have mulled this event over in my head I have asked God, “What can I learn from this?”. And, what has come crystal clear to me is that this fire is just like a relapse in addiction.  How many of us have thought that we have this addiction kicked and then let our guard down, only to fall unexpectedly, blindsided it seems? We cannot be too careful with fire. Neither can we be too careful with our susceptibility to temptation and sin. Jesus said it often… “Watch and pray that ye fall not into temptation”. So, Men of Integrity, let’s stay vigilante, pray for one another, ourselves, and spend time daily in His word. He will fight the battles for us and through Him we can be more than conquerors!  Amen.

This preceding story was actually an email I sent to my Men of Integrity support group a few weeks ago.   My opinion is that everyone should be in a support group… really what the church is suppose to be.   And if only that were the case the church would be ignited by holy fire!  Anyway, hope you enjoyed my story.

Marty Miller

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