I hope you don’t ever have to evacuate your house, but if you do, it may give you pause to consider the real treasures in your home.
Children are a gift from the Lord; they are a reward from him. Psalm 127:3
This photo shows all that is left for many who lost their homes in a couple of years ago in the small town of Weed, California, a hour north of the city we lived in for 14 years.
Summer is the dry season in Northern California and as a result, fires are rampant in the mountains. Sometimes those fires reach homes and properties, forcing many to evacuate. When they leave, they are unsure of what they will come back to find.
I will never forget the summer we had to evacuate when we lived there. I packed up the car full of Stuff that I thought we’d need. As we drove away, I looked at the house I’d grown to love and wondered if we’d return to it standing or singed.
It’s in those moments of evacuation that you get a very clear picture of what is really important in life. It wasn’t in the Stuff we’d packed into our cars. It was in the three kids who were squeezed together in the back seat amidst the Stuff.
Oh, the Stuff was good Stuff–the photo albums, the medicines, the dogs, some clothes, important books and mementos.
But the real treasure was in those three young lives. And I asked myself over the next day or two as we waited out the fire at a family member’s house, had we really been living as if our kids were more important than our Stuff?
How many times had I been upset about a broken dish or spilled drinks on the sofa or clothes ruined in the washer? How often was I irritated at a cluttered family room or dirt tracked in from outside or crumbs in Dad’s Lazy-Boy?
Too often, I think.
I hope you never have to evacuate your home. But perhaps in your soul, you can evacuate and leave behind your belongings just for a minute, to remind yourself where your true treasure is the next time your kids ruin your Stuff.
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