Today I cleaned my kitchen floor.
Not exactly earth-shattering news.
I love the honey color of the maple hardwood but the light tone shows every spot, drip, or dribble. With several people “cooking” in the kitchen, the floor takes a beating. I’m picky about the way it looks. So I clean it. Frequently.
But, as I was grumbling to myself this morning about having to re-do the floor once again this week, God tapped me on the shoulder. I could hear him say, “At least you have a floor to clean.”
I stood humbly rebuked as I thought of those people who don’t have a floor. Thirty-five miles to the east of us a community is bracing for evacuation orders as a wildfire burns out of control, hungrily licking at the trees as it bears down on the tiny town. Many of those residents will walk away from their house fearing what will happen, only to return to discover their worst nightmares come true. (See picture above)
Last year a similar scenario played out along a stretch of the McKenzie River as trees fell victim to fire. Dozens of homes were consumed. Residents returned to lone standing chimneys and piles of rubble, the last vestiges of a place they once cherished. The community opened its arms to help because losing your residence takes more than a pat on the back.
God’s word says in Psalm 55:22 (ESV): Cast your burden on the Lord, And He shall sustain you; He shall never permit the righteous to be moved.
Reminded of the suffering I witnessed, I return to my floor. I scrub it with renewed appreciation of its existence. I remove the coffee slops, the bits of salad that escaped a plate, and scrub away the shoe prints left after a foot found a wet spot. Soon the maple wood looks like people live here. Not livestock.
For now this is my floor and my home.
A place I cherish. For that I give thanks.