Up In Smoke

A little over a week ago, I had a moment. Here’s the back story…

Brandon and I both had a crazy week… my beloved was working ridiculous hours since it was his duty week as Senior Drill Sergeant (See: really early mornings, late/tiring nights) and I was running like a lunatic trying to keep up with more church activities/duties than anticipated.

Our backyard needed to be mowed. It is a small, little yard and we really can’t justify spending a couple-hundred bucks on buying a mower… If we play our cards right, we only need to mow about once a month anyways. When we have “time” we borrow a mower from our sweet neighbors.

However, our schedules didn’t allow for that and I didn’t want to make our neighbors do it for us. (They are busy people too.) So I contacted a small local business to do it. I’ve used them before and they do a great job. Just $10 to mow our yard. No biggie. (And still cheaper in the long run than if we actually bought a mower.)

Long story still long… I wasn’t going to be home when they were coming to mow on Saturday, so I agreed to “hide” the payment on the grill in our backyard.

Unfortunately, they weren’t able to make it on their scheduled day. No biggie, right? They were going to come on Sunday. Worked for me. I left the envelope with cash in its hiding spot so I wouldn’t forget to put it back the next day  before they arrived.

Saturday evening, Brandon finished out his duty week and came home at a semi-decent time. (AKA in time for supper.) We hadn’t really gotten to spend any time with one another for the last week, and he had to work another 24 shift on Sunday. So we decided to cook supper together.

Preparations began. Suddenly, I heard Brandon call me from the backyard… “Uh, Sharita???”

Oh no. The grill.

Sure enough, I rounded the corner  just in time to see the faint resemblance of a 10 dollar bill turn to ash and be whisked away by the breeze.

Our money went up in smoke. Literally.

Brandon thought it was hilarious. (Cue deep belly laugh.) Me? Not so much. I was working really hard on keeping our budget in check… and my beloved simply didn’t understand that those tiny ashes could have  bought me two (maybe three) servings of Fro-Yo at Chill. Or two skinny mocha-lattes at Starbucks… Or, or, or…

What do you do when things go up in smoke?

It’s funny now. (Kinda. At least my bitterness for the situation is fading.) And I know you are laughing. But sometimes it isn’t funny when things go up in smoke… Like our plans. Like our dreams. Like our money. Like our relationships.

When those go up in smoke… it can be painful. But I have good news. Notice the keyword in all of those? OUR. Our plans. Our dreams… Not God’s. God’s plans never go up in smoke. God’s dreams for us never fail. God’s love for us never runs out.

Nobody can send God’s goodness up in smoke. Not even The Enemy.

Have you ever had something go up in smoke? How did you react?  How do you handle the disappointments in life? Don’t be shy… Share your thoughts here.

If you feel like your life right now is similar to that poor $10 bill on the grill, take heart. God has you covered. He has a fire extinguisher on hand. Submit to His plans, His dreams, His love… and He will save us from going up in smoke.

Beauty in the Ashes,

“The smoke of the incense, together with the prayers of the saints, went up before God from the angel’s hand.” –Revelation 8:4

Categories: beauty, Christ, funny, glory, God, hope, Lesson, life, pain, promises | Tags: , , , , , , , | 26 Comments

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26 thoughts on “Up In Smoke

  1. Sorry for the surmised absence of Fro-Yo in your life this week.

    • BAHA!Best. Comment. Ever. I laughed out loud. And thanks for your condolences, Lori-Ann… It’s been rough 😉

  2. Lori

    it isn’t funny when things go up in smoke… Like our plans. Like our dreams. Like our money. Like our relationships.

    When those go up in smoke… it can be painful. But I have good news. Notice the keyword in all of those? OUR. Our plans. Our dreams… Not God’s. God’s plans never go up in smoke. God’s dreams for us never fail. God’s love for us never runs out.——

    AWESOME words, Sharita!! Im glad it was only 10 dollars that went up in smoke. But the thoughts coming out of it are pure gold – 🙂 Its difficult when it is r plans, our dreams, our money, our relationships but hopefully as all that burns away -God will fill the void with His plans, His dreams for us and an ability to learn of His provision, His comfort and His new adventures. Its hard to keep that perspective but it is all that sustains us , that hope, that He will bring the beauty from the ashes, 🙂

    • Thanks so much, Lori! And yes, something that burned up in paper can create some pretty golden thoughts. Blessings to you, girl!

  3. This is great, Sharita! I came over from Tell Me A True Story. Isn’t it amazing? God gave you a story from the $10 smoke, which is worth a lot more than that to those who read your story. Thanks for the deep lesson here.

    • Amen, Diane! I know that His words have much more weight and worth than paper money– or Frozen Yogurt. Praise the Lord for that!

  4. God is Good!! He always has a plan and it is better then anything I could even imagine!! (o:
    When life is up in smoke or I am smack in the middle of a fire …. I say that ~ out loud … to myself and anyone that will listen. I say it over and over and over (o: AND it is always true.
    Thanks for a GREAT blog Sharita!!! (o:

  5. Love this post, Sharita! And sorry about your moola!

    • Ha ha, thanks Brandy– It was kind of an expensive supper, but it did give me a great blog post topic– so it was worth it, right?

  6. I’m watching the ashes flitter away as I type. But if my plans aren’t God’s plans I’d rather have them go up in smoke than pull me off track. Thanks so much for sharing.

    • Oh Lisa. Incredible words! Thank you for this deep and thoughtful comment. I am right there with you– if they aren’t God’s plans, better they burn up and allow Him to create beauty from our ashes!

  7. Momma Lex

    You make me smile. I’ll bet he doesn’t start the grill again without opening the lid first 🙂 Loved the message and I try to apply it daily-when my life is “on fire (out of control)” I turn to my Lord for cooling peace and grace!!

    • I bet he does. I love him, but let’s be honest– he IS a man. But you can bet I don’t leave money on the grill again ha ha. So thankful that God’s plans are perfect!

  8. Thank you for sharing at “Tell me a Story,” Sorry about your paper money burning. I would have been upset too. Fortunately your hubby has a good sense of humor and could laugh a bit. Yes we do have plans that go up in smoke – most of us do. Thanks for the reminder to keep our peace and that God’s goodness does not go up in smoke !!

  9. Jenn Gifford

    Sharita, this is so HILARIOUS!!!! The mowing people should do it for free since they didn’t come on the day they said they would(in a perfect world right??) 🙂

  10. Amen sweet one, amen.

  11. I had a similar situation to this only not involving money. It was the day after Christmas and we were grilling out. I was a little fixated on things being perfect, and before I knew it the grill was on fire and so was the side of the house. Nothing like a little grease fire to put things in perspective.

    Too funny. Have a good week, Sharita.

    • Oh my. Talk about a fireside Christmas celebration! It is definitely a perspective shifter. Thanks for popping by, Amy. You are doing a great job with our SDG Small Group!

  12. dropping by from ” Tell me your story” and it was really a funny story, but you learn something out of it and you are right, Sometimes we get so busy of our schedule and we forget what is really imprtant. God’s schedule for us. Anyway, God will supply all our needs according to his richness and glory. Thanks for sharing.

    • You are very welcome… and yes, it is SO hard to roll with God’s plans… Especially when it involves a smoking pile of ashes. Thanks so much for stopping by!

  13. That sounds like something that would’ve happened to me! I am soooo thankful that God’s plans never fail. Now if I can just let go and stop “helping” Him with His plans.

    • Amen, Sharon! Sometimes being “helpful” is more of a hindrance- I am right there with you!!

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