Thursday, May 19, 2011

A Fire & a Broken Sprinkler

Two nights ago I went for a walk around my neighborhood.

I walked because I'm 40. I walked because even if I only ate one saltine all day long everyday for a week I would not lose 1 pound! Since I turned 40 things have changed.

By the way, when I say I'm 40 I mean I'm in the 40's (actually 41) but I think for the whole decade of my 40's I will just refer to myself as 40. OK? OK.

While I was walking I noticed a couple of things that I cannot stop thinking about. Now, I am not the kind of person who can turn an everyday ordinary circumstance or object into a life lesson or sermon like some of my wonderful friends (Dana & Mark). But what I saw has got me thinking.

The first was a house. I walked down this particular street because a few nights before it had been blocked off by tape and there was a fire engine and an ambulance. I wanted to see if there had been a fire. (I'm kinda curious by nature) While walking I didn't notice anything out of the ordinary. Then turning the corner of this street I glanced back thinking hmmm, I guess it was a false alarm, nothing actually wrong. That's when I saw it. On one of the homes, which still looked completely perfect, even beautiful from the front, the roof in the back was completely gone. All that was left were the charred beams that once held up the roof that provided shelter for this family.

I stood in shock for a few minutes, amazed that I had just walked right on by, not being able to see anything wrong. Saddened for the family or people who called this home.

I walked on.

The next thing I noticed on my walk was a broken sprinkler in front of another house. The water was shooting in the air at least 15 feet high! I went up to the door and knocked . . . no answer. I stood watching the water for a minuet. It was ALOT of water. Flooding their yard and running down the street.

One a simple problem with a simple solution. One a catastrophe with a very long, hard, costly solution.

I've been thinking how we, individuals or families are like this at different times in our lives.

Sometimes we have problems that are simple to solve, annoying but manageable. Sometimes they are right there out in the open for everyone to see and a good friend can come along and say "hey, you've got a problem there, can I help?"

Other times our individual or family problems are huge. There is damage that seems insurmountable. From the outside there may be no evidence of the damage at all. No way others would know the devastation on the inside.

What I've been thinking, am thinking, is, how can we help or receive help when no one knows.
No one person may know the pain, the turmoil, the hurt or the suffering but there is One who does. 
Thank you Lord that you not only know, you love.
As for us, we can be more compassionate towards others, more understanding and less judgemental, more forgiving and more loving, remembering that we don't always know what pain someone else is going through.

Pretty is . . . compassion