Fire

Isaiah 43:2 When you walk through the fire, you will not be burned; the flames will not set you ablaze.

Unfortunately, I know plenty of people who literally walked through the fire and were burned.  My family has been plagued with fire.  The first victim of this fire was a young boy that very few in our family every met. My husband’s grandmother had a little brother. Her father was pouring gas into a carburetor when it caught on fire and severely burned the boy. He died from his injuries.  Later Grandma burned her hands in a grease fire.  When my husband was a little boy his house burned to the ground and they lost everything.

When my husband and I had been married for only a couple of years, his precious Uncle Lynn and his cousin were working for a gas company cleaning out large storage tanks.  Something caused a spark and there was a huge explosion.  Uncle Lynn was burned over at least 70% of his body.  The antibiotics that they used to keep him alive left him deaf. His body was grossly deformed.  The pig skin that they transplanted over many parts of his body gave him constant trouble.  Uncle Lynn went home to be with Jesus a couple of years ago. I like to imagine him in heaven listening to all the wonderful things that he couldn’t hear on earth and living without the burden of a body that was constantly betraying him. We were very close and I miss him very much but I am delighted that he is no longer dealing with the effects of fire.

When my husband’s youngest brother, Jerry, was in elementary school, he was playing in a dumpster and lit a match to see what was in there. He discovered the hard way that it was full of paint thinner and other explosive material.  His legs were burned severely.  I remember him having to go in and have the skin scraped off of his body. It was beyond awful.

Today our family had another encounter with fire but this time it ended very differently than all of the other times. We have been in the carpet cleaning business for about 15 years now but we have never had a day that even faintly resembled today. Gary and our son-in-law, Ryan, were at one of our client’s homes cleaning the carpet.  Ryan was inside working and Gary went out to get something from the van. (He had been out to the van a few minutes before and there was no sign that anything was wrong.) Gary saw flames and shut off the equipment. He then got in the van to see what the source of the fire was.  He saw that the fuel line had been damaged and diesel fuel was being ignited as it came out of the damaged hose.  At this point he heard a noise and a burst of flame flew at him. The fire filled the back of the van. He turned his head away and the hair on the back of his head was burned.  He then jumped out, got the hose and extinguished the fire.

After the initial relief set in that the fire had not harmed him, we started to think about our situation. About a month ago our other van, which is 17 years old and has served us well for the better part of those years, had black smoke pouring out of the engine block so we decided that it was basically inoperable. Our main van, which had now caught on fire, was the primary way that God provided income for us.

So Gary came home and we gathered the family and we prayed.

After we were finished Gary took the van to our supply house where they could safely figure out how much damage had been done. It turns out that there was absolutely NO damage to the van other than the slit in the fuel line. They were able to cut away the portion of the fuel line with the hole in it and reattach it.  They didn’t even charge us to do that. The only thing we had to replace was a garden hose that was inside our truck. There were no melted wires. Nothing was damaged at all. There weren’t even any burn marks on the walls or the ceiling. We think the slit in the fuel line was caused by another piece of equipment pushing against it.

I know this has been a pretty long explanation of our day today.  So if you have actually made it to the end of this post, we want to invite you to praise God with us that everything turned out as it did. His faithfulness constantly amazes us.

 

 

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