The Day I Almost Burned the House Down

Eight eggs, a pot of water and a stove burner turned on high. Let me tell you a story.

Yesterday I was multi-tasking, as I often do. It was the middle of the afternoon. I had been out all morning, home for a quick lunch, out once more in the early afternoon for an appointment. Now I was back home for just a little while before I needed to head out yet again with my daughter, Bethany.

I decided it would be a good idea to boil a few eggs to make some egg salad sandwiches for the next day’s lunches. So I got that underway, intending to turn off the stove burner after five minutes, before we left the house.

At the appointed time Bethany and I jetted off to her chiropractor appointment. Then we stopped in at Bulk Barn and finally FreshCo before heading home after an absence of about an hour and a half.

About 8 blocks from home I suddenly remembered the eggs I had set to boil almost 2 hours previously! I had forgotten to turn off the heat!

Ahhhhhhh! I blurted out the situation to my daughter. My heart was now firmly lodged in my throat and my pulse rate had skyrocketed in milliseconds. Visions of billowing smoke rising over our street filled my mind’s eye … or maybe by this time the house would be nothing more than a baked and blackened pile of rubble sizzling in the afternoon sun.

I started praying like mad. Bethany can attest that I prayed — out loud, non-stop, with earnest intensity — until we pulled into our driveway and jumped out of the car. To my great relief everything seemed amazingly normal … how could this be?  I unlocked the front door and raced to the kitchen. I couldn’t believe the sight that met my eyes!

The eggs, the pot, and the water were all intact, sitting coolly on the stove. The burner knob, by some miracle, had not completely clicked into place. It hovered between “off” and “high” … so the heat had never actually come on!

“Thank you Jesus!” were the first words out of my mouth. Some angel must’ve been holding my hand earlier that afternoon.

When crazy things like this happen I have to tell people about it. I’m of an age when testifying about God’s reality and activity trumps my own embarrassment over mistakes and mishaps in my life.

By no means do I believe it was just a fluke that the stove burner didn’t turn all the way on yesterday afternoon. If I’d had my own way, I’d have been boiling eggs … and my house might have burned down because of my own negligence.

I know that Someone bigger than me, who loves me very much, was looking out for me – and I want to testify to His goodness and sovereignty in my life.

It was a stupid mistake on my part, and one that could have been very costly. I will probably, for awhile at least, obsess about checking that appliances are “off” before I leave the house.

I have also gleaned some other significant reminders from this incident:

* God is good and He has my back in every situation. He never leaves me – He is protecting, guiding, caring for me even when I don’t realize it.

* Don’t be in such a hurry. Slow down, take your time. “Haste makes waste” as the old saying goes.

*It helps to cry out to God in prayer! It provides an anchor and reminds me of Who is really in charge.

*Thank the Lord in all circumstances. God is good — all the time.  I want my faith in God to be such that I can thank Him that my house did not burn down. I also want my faith in God to be such that my confidence in His goodness, faithfulness and love would not have been shaken even if my house had burned down.

I am grateful that God is so patient with me. I am grateful that He teaches me lessons and lovingly shapes my character day by day. Even though He must often shake His head in disbelief at some of the foolish things I do, He never, ever, gives up on me. Nothing can separate me from Him as long as my heart is open to His. I am one grateful lady!

Oh, and by the way. Do you know what happens when eggs in their shells boil dry on the stove? The shell burns, emitting a frightfully foul odor. Then as the eggs continue to heat, they explode making a monstrous mess – egg bits and fragments of shell all over the place!  I know … you see, I have been there and done that.  At family gatherings, my kids love to drag out the story of how, when they were young, Mom burned the boiled eggs.

Now they will have another “egg story” to tell: the day Mom almost burned the house down.

Guess I’ll steer clear of making my own Easter eggs this year!





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