Wednesday, March 2, 2011

What would you take?

A few weeks ago, one of my girls asked me, “If you had thirty minutes to pack up and leave, what would you take?” A theoretical, thought maker at the time; yesterday, we had the opportunity to practice that scenario. Around 3:30, we noticed a gigantic column of smoke to our west. The wind was blowing east. How far away was it, we wondered. If it was close enough to worry about, surely we would be able to smell it. (No.) If it was far enough away that we didn’t need to prepare for the worst, it must be enormous! I sent a message to CamDad (who works about 40 miles away from our home) and he replied that he could see it from his office window. That worried me. Then the helicopters started flying over our house. I went next door to talk to Nana. She was on her way out to talk to me—she had seen us standing in the yard, looking into the sun, into the wind. We went into her house to see if the news was saying anything. It was. A neighbor sped down the road to tell us she had just come from town and had passed the fire, the fire trucks…it was less than a mile away and she was going back home to start loading valuables in her car (the oxygen tanks her husband needs, meds, cats). Nana and I looked at each other, nodded. She said, “I’m calling .” I came home to start our preparations. Did the children even have shoes on? Within 30 minutes, we had loaded up our van and were prepared to evacuate, should the need arise.

It did not—at 7:30 there was no more smoke. We made some scrambled eggs for dinner and went to bed. Thank you LORD, please bless the (mostly volunteer!!) firefighters who worked so hard to extinguish the flames and protect lives and property.

So—what did we load into our van? The (rather small) box of photos in my closet…the laptops with digital photos and the school records…a change of clothing for each person, diapers…the seeds I had laying next to my computer as I was planning garden layout. My children each grabbed the things precious to them: a journal, a doll, a musical instrument…the tiny apple trees sprouted from the apples from Papa’s home town. We also loaded up school books and supplies. Had there been more time and more space I would have wanted the blankets I made for each of my babies…the tool box Grampa built…the desk Grandma had inherited…

People and Memories. The important stuff. Everything else can go now.

A lot of times our Spiritual lives are like that, too. We fill them up with all the good stuff we think we should do, so full that we can’t find the important stuff…so full that we spend all of our time dealing with the good stuff…so full that the important stuff gets packed away in a box, stuffed in a closet.

1Corinthians 11-15 The foundation that has already been laid is Jesus Christ, and no one can lay down any other foundation. But if people build on that foundation, using gold, silver, jewels, wood, grass, or straw, their work will be clearly seen, because the Day of Judgment will make it visible. That Day will appear with fire, and the fire will test everyone's work to show what sort of work it was. If the building that has been put on the foundation still stands, the builder will get a reward. But if the building is burned up, the builder will suffer loss. The builder will be saved, but it will be as one who escaped from a fire.

What will you take with you?