FIRE!

We recently had a huge wildfire in the hills above our home.  It quickly  developed into the largest fire in California history with 700 homes destroyed locally.  The hot, dry winds induced the fire to rapidly spread to surrounding communities causing significant devastation.

Even though we live on the hill, we were never told to evacuate!  We went to bed. But the smell of smoke was so strong we could not sleep. We knew there was a fire in the next town and we thought the wind was blowing their smoke our direction.  Little did we know the fire had already reached our hill!

Around 11:45 my husband got up and discovered the sky at the top of the hill was red.  We would need to evacuate–but where would we go?   Motels will be filled with people who evacuated earlier from the next town.  Just then a friend who lives at the beach texted:  “Come and stay with us.”  It was 10 min. before midnight. I felt God directed that text!

When we walked outside we were shocked at the swirling hot smoke above us and the red embers falling from the sky.  The streets were packed with cars trying to evacuate the hills.  Most traffic signals didn’t work and it took a half hour to drive one mile to the beach.  Many people stayed up all night hosing down their roofs and putting out spot fires.  They not only saved their own homes, but the homes of neighbors.   These people are heroes.

It was interesting to hear the different responses from people who’d lost their homes.  One friend called the next morning and said, “Our home burned down but we are thanking God for the many years we were able to live there.”   Or, “the Lord gives and the Lord takes away.  We will still bless the name of the Lord.”

Then there was,  “Why me?  Why did our house have to burn?”  Compared with:   “Why not me?  Why NOT our house?”

Those people who were surrendered to Jesus Christ, seemed to come through this tragedy with hope.   One friend said it became a platform for them to share Christ with many people.  They were able to explain that they were trusting God and He had given them peace:  “What we lost was just stuff.” 

Whatever disaster strikes, as followers of Jesus, we know our God stands firm and we can always, always trust Him.

  • In all this you greatly rejoice, though now for a little while you may have had to suffer grief in all kinds of trials.     1 Peter 1:6
  • Have no fear of sudden disaster or of the ruin that overtakes the wicked,  for the Lord will be at your side and will keep your foot from being snared.   Proverbs 3:25-26

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[This life is temporary. This life is short.  When this life is over, our bodies will die and become empty shells, but our souls will continue to live forever.  Where will the “real you” live?  Will you live for all eternity separated from God?  Or will you spend eternity in the presence of God in heaven?   Learn more so you can make your most important decision:   http://www.godlife.com/gospel/  and  http://www.godlife.com/en/about-christianity

About Kathleen

God delights in working through His people as they submit to Him. Jesus said to go into all the world and preach the good news to everyone (Mark 16:15). No matter where we live on this planet, people are separated from God because of sin. We ALL need a Savior, and there’s only ONE. It brings me great joy to share Christ with the lost and lonely. Over the years I’ve learned a great deal while facilitating Bible studies. I’ve found myself on college and university campuses, the beach, the streets, the hospital, the jail and the juvenile facility for incarcerated teens sharing God’s message of love. I also serve as an online missionary with Global Media Outreach. I’ve seen countless lives transformed when people turn away from sin and turn to Jesus. The changes God makes are real and lasting. These are some of my experiences. NOTE: My stories have been altered, removing any and all identifying factors. This includes names and other particulars in order to protect confidentiality and anonymity.
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14 Responses to FIRE!

  1. Helene says:

    Praising the Lord with you that your house was spared and you are using this tragic situation to spread the gospel how this life is temporary and judgment can come any day.

  2. Liana says:

    Praise God you and your home safe, and that opportunities for sharing God’s Word were presented for those affected.

  3. Frank King says:

    Kathleen, thank God for the favor He showed you and your husband during this tragedy. Anyone can rejoice and be thankful when all is well. The difference Christ makes in our life shines the brightest during the difficult times in our life.

  4. Ronald says:

    Its a really touching yet so uplifting story. Jesus looks over His own. He is a Shepard indeed. His intentions are indeed to preserve us . its a really amazing testimony

  5. April Boyer says:

    So glad our God is faithful. and that you are safe! Thankful that other lives were spared, and some were changed.

  6. MEL THOMPSON says:

    Thank you, Kathleen, for using a tragedy to demonstrate God’s provision in your family and others as well. The apostle Paul wrote in his letter to the church in Phillipi, “I have learned in any and all circumstances the secret of facing every situation…I have the strength for all things in Christ! Who empowers me [I am ready for anything and equal to anything through Him Who infuses inner strength into me; I am self-sufficient in Christ’s sufficiency]” (Philp. 4:12-13).

  7. Kathleen, your story, along with many others that involve tragedy but still magnify the name of our God, reminds me of this quote by Octavius Wilson; “David’s pen never wrote more sweetly than we dipped in the ink of affliction.”
    Thanking God that you and your family are well and praying for strength and restoration for all who suffered loss.

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