Monthly Archives: January, 2014

“Your Love”

Hello, and I hope you are doing great tonight.  Just got finished  journaling tonight, in my spiral notebook, and by the way, a great way to relieve stress.  My thoughts tonight were about our Saviors love for mankind.  I hope these words will be a blessing to you.

“Your Love”

Heavenly Father,

Hallowed be your Holy Name.  Praise and Honor belong to You.  Jesus your name is worthy of attention, Your Name is to be praised among the Nations.  Hallelujah to the Lamb of God.  Father, your love gathers your people from distant and foreign lands, it demolishes strongholds, and unites brotherhood.  Your love frees people from distress, it weaves forgiveness into ordinary lives.  Your love grants pardon to the vilest offenders, and it releases people from grievances toward another.  Your love demonstrates the power to change, the ability to adapt, and the strength to stay the course.  Your love carries me a thousand times and then some.  Your love embraces the poor, and gives power to the weak, it holds together families in distress, it places bread on our table once again.  Your love lifts up the broken-hearted and separates the proud.  Your love shouts from the deep and echoes from the mountain peaks.  Your love covers us like a blanket on a cold morning, it shields like a protector, an armor of a soldier.  Your love travels occupied territory and searches until it finds a heart of residence.  Your love. Your love, sacrifices to the call of one lonely soul, crying out, in, and of your love.

Heavenly Father, May I never take for granted your great and wonderful love, the love of Jesus, your one and only Son.   Thank you, Heavenly Father for your great and wonderful love.

May Gods Love find you today.

Busted Water Pipes & Stress

Have you ever put a can of Soda in the freezer and forget that it’s in there until the next day?  I sure have, and its a mess cleaning out the freezer.  The can explodes and frozen soda sticks to the freezer and everything in its path like glue.  Frozen water pipes act in a similar way.  When pipes freeze the container expands causing pressure against the liquid that has not frozen yet and causes a crack or a violent tear in the container.  And the pressure is released, and container or pipe  is severely damaged or ruined.    

The aftermath of busted pipe is a lot of property damage, and a lot of squeegeeing.  That one shift we had last week, after the temperature began to rise from single digit numbers was just enough for the pipes to give way from the pressure they were under.  I’ve read that up north, where the winters are more brutal that the south, the homes are better designed to insulate pipes more efficient.  Pipes up north are layered with insulation to protect the container or pipe from the elements.   Down south we will run pipes under homes with little or no insulation and also in attics unprotected.  We don’t have real bad winters, they are few and far between, but when we do experience the northern single digit temperature, usually we become very busy in our occupation.    

Application : If you put a container of soda, in a freezer and forget its there, it’s going to most likely explode.  The container isn’t made for those conditions.  As firefighters if we don’t cover our entire body with PPE’s before we enter into a burning building, bad things can happen to the container we call our body.  I wouldn’t want to go in without every piece of armor that is available for my safety.  CISM is available for our safety also.  No it’s not part of our armor such as our PPE, but it is a necessary tool we have available to us.  CISM is a vital  resource that is available for each one of us if  needed.  We experience so many stressors that can stop us in our tracks.  CISM is a system that allows us to vent before the pressure becomes to great within us.  We’ve all seen the damage that busted water pipes can cause.  The residual damage can take weeks to clean up.  Stress when it goes unchecked can cause residual damage also.   If you feel the need to “vent,” find a trusted friend or confidant.  For me, it was my crew that i responded with the night of my stressful call.  We came back from the call and i asked my Captain if he would listen to my problem and he did, along with my crew.  It helped me tremendously just to get it off  my chest.  It took me about a month of company meetings with my crew to get it off my shoulders.   Other resources that are good are your pastor, and chaplain to name a few.  EAP is another outlet we have in seeking guidance during our burden.  Keep the pipes insulated, keep our minds insulated with layers of resources that will be needed when the changing conditions come our way.  

I Love you all, have a safe shift.   Lee.

“Conflict? – Be Encouraged”

We often experience hits in our walk with the Lord.  At times it seems like the more we try to live for God, the more we are bombarded by daily trials and temptations to stray and go our own way.  More times than not, when we venture, and go our own way we tend to go farther than we ever intended to go.  Have you ever heard the grass is greener on the other side?  For the most part, this statement is not true.  I can think of Lot in the bible.  Abraham is Lots brother and they were in the cattle business together.  They both were so blessed with cattle; they had a problem with the two herds and their herdsman.  Conflict arose in the camp, so the two brothers parted ways.  The two divided the land.  Abraham offered to Lot, if you take the land to the left, then I will go to the right, and if you choose right, then I will go to the left.  Lot saw the most beautiful spot of land, that was well watered and looked a lot like a garden of the Lord, the Bible tells us.  Lot packs up and went to the green beautiful spot of land that perhaps offered more of the necessities needed to farm, than the land he left his brother.  Only one problem.  He set up camp toward Sodom.  The green grass had its lure, but it wasn’t greener.  It turned out to be the worst decision of Lots life.

Genesis 13: 1-13  So Abram went up from Egypt to the Negev, with his wife and everything he had, and Lot went with him. Abram had become very wealthy in livestock and in silver and gold .From the Negev he went from place to place until he came to Bethel, to the place between Bethel and Ai where his tent had been earlier and where he had first built an altar. There Abram called on the name of the Lord  .Now Lot, who was moving about with Abram, also had flocks and herds and tents. But the land could not support them while they stayed together, for their possessions were so great that they were not able to stay together. And quarreling arose between Abram’s herders and Lot’s. The Canaanites and Perizzites were also living in the land at that time  .So Abram said to Lot, “Let’s not have any quarreling between you and me, or between your herders and mine, for we are close relatives. Is not the whole land before you? Let’s part company. If you go to the left, I’ll go to the right; if you go to the right, I’ll go to the left.  ”10 Lot looked around and saw that the whole plain of the Jordan toward Zoar was well watered, like the garden of the Lord, like the land of Egypt. (This was before the Lord destroyed Sodom and Gomorrah.)   11 So Lot chose for himself the whole plain of the Jordan and set out toward the east. The two men parted company:   12 Abram lived in the land of Canaan, while Lot lived among the cities of the plain and pitched his tents near Sodom. 13 Now the people of Sodom were wicked and were sinning greatly against the Lord. (NIV)

Application: Whenever conflict raises its ugly head, don’t lash out in despair and say something you really don’t mean.  It’s easy when you work with brothers and sisters, at the fire station 1/3 the year, to have disagreements, and conflict.  When we are experiencing offenses or conflicts, step back take a deep breath, go outside and cool off, before responding irrationally.  Silence is golden, when you’ve been offended.  Our flesh tends to lash out, and we say things we don’t really intend to say.  The spirit man, the part that God controls, fights to overcome our flesh that lashes out.  It’s very important to stay in God’s word and allow our Spirit man to be built up, so when the temptation arises to lash out, we will think twice.  We may think, the greener grass, is for me to speak my mind.  But could it be that God wants us to step back and “be swift to hear and slow to speak – James 1:19” before speaking.  Abraham could have allowed the conflict between his herdsman and Lots herdsman to come between them.  He could have started a family feud with his brother but instead he wanted to bring a solution to the tensions between their workers.  Abraham gave his brother the choice of land.  A very humble and generous way to handle the conflict.  Abraham took the high road and made the best of it.  When conflict raises its ugly head, take the high road, be encouraged and listen to the spirit man within.

Deuteronomy 31:6 Be strong and courageous. Do not fear or be in dread of them, for it is the LORD your God who goes with you. He will not leave you or forsake you.”

Isaiah 41:10 fear not, for I am with you; be not dismayed, for I am your God; I will strengthen you, I will help you, I will uphold you with my righteous right hand.

Zephaniah 3:17 The LORD your God is in your midst, a mighty one who will save; he will rejoice over you with gladness; he will quiet you by his love; he will exult over you with loud singing.

1 Corinthians 10:13 No temptation has overtaken you that is not common to man. God is faithful, and he will not let you be tempted beyond your ability, but with the temptation he will also provide the way of escape, that you may be able to endure it.

2 Corinthians 4:16-18  So we do not lose heart. Though our outer self is wasting away, our inner self is being renewed day by day. For this light momentary affliction is preparing for us an eternal weight of glory beyond all comparison,  as we look not to the things that are seen but to the things that are unseen. For the things that are seen are transient, but the things that are unseen are eternal.

James 1:19&20 My dear brothers and sister, take note of this: Everyone should be quick to listen, slow to speak and slow to become angry. (20)Because human anger does not produce the righteousness that God desires.

Have a good week.