Smoke and Gratitude

Gail Seidel's picture

Early Monday morning, I began to smell smoke coming through the vents in our kitchen, and by now, back in our bedroom. I got up early to finish some work, but, first turned our thermostat up.  It was 4:45 a.m.  Evidences of preparation were everywhere: packages to be wrapped for mailing, paper, ribbons, tags were piled all over the dining room table; sacks of throw away papers from my husband’s study to be taken out; half emptied boxes of Christmas decorations.

Thoughts raced through my mind- our house is getting ready to catch on fire –oh great… it’s Christmas – so much left to do, this can’t be happening… Oh, Lord, I am so sorry I take our safety and security for granted; call the fire department…our friends lost their home this summer in a fire; wake up my husband…I'd better get dressed …the party Friday night at our house…the fire safety safe  is still in the box in the garage…

We turned off the system. The smoke smell died down. We delayed on calling the fire department, but called emergency repair number to start there, then, began to wait.

In the middle of the afternoon, two very dear Vietnamese brothers came to check our heating system. After a few minutes of stomping around in our attic, they discovered the problem. Simple - replace the remcapacitor (whatever that is- something about ignition), clean the unit and we are good to go. That was it…What? No fire? Back to normal?

I am so relieved at how God took care of what looked like a potential dire emergency.

He did something else. He added a conversation, a conversation with one of the brothers about Viet Nam. These brothers' father (Daddy as he called him) was also a Capt. (like my husband) in the  South Vietnamese army. After the fall of South Viet Nam, his father spent 7 years in a prisoner camp in the north before his family (5 children) and he were allowed to leave Viet Nam to come to Dallas. Now, he owns an AC/Heating company and his children go to a private parochial school.

As he drove away, I never thought 41 years ago, when my Captain husband was fighting along side of them for their freedom that someone from VN would be helping me in my home in Dallas.

Safety and security AND freedom cannot be taken for granted- a good reminder to me to be so grateful especially in this season of Advent for the gift of Jesus who keeps me safe, secure and free for all eternity.

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