A couple of days ago, I was setting out to make dinner.

I gathered all my stuff, which included the ingredients for a really nice salad, and, at the last minute, decided I would add some chicken. I pulled out my cast iron skillet, and a couple of chicken tenderloins, seasoned them, and added a little olive oil to the pan. Then, just as I was turning the stove on to medium-low to heat the oil, Lilli called.

We chatted for a few minutes about her day, and she showed me some of her toys, then “carried me” downstairs to sit with her on the “big comfy couch.” They got a new sofa when they moved, and she L O V E S it. Then, after she got settled in, she asked to see my play horses, so I obliged. We sat with them for a couple of minutes, and enjoyed a little horse-talk, before I told her I needed to go back and finish making dinner.

I want to watch you make dinner, Mimmie!

So, off we went to the kitchen.

And the billowing white smoke.

Yep, I’d completely forgotten about the oil warming on the stove. And guess what? IT WAS REALLY WARM.

We both saw it and gasped in tandem.

Mimmie’s gotta go, Lilli! It’s all okay, but I’ve gotta go!

As I threw open doors and removed the skillet to safety, I was shaking my head at my dementia-like move. Seriously, though, I can think of more than a handful of times when I knew God was bringing my attention to a thing that required my focus and action, and within what seemed like seconds, I was distracted from it to something more pleasurable, until the thing was completely out of control. All but up in flames, and filling my life with a thick smoke that left me on the defensive.

Folks, we need to listen when He’s pointing us toward those things, even if there’s something more fun happening in the other room.

Especially then.

Or we’re likely to find our lives up in smoke before we even know what happened. Trust me.

(Also, check the batteries in your smoke alarm. Because, hey, those can be helpful, too…says the girl who remembered too late that she disconnected the one in her kitchen because it went off at the slightest provocation. Imagine.)


Look, I’m ready to pour out my spirit on you;
    I’m ready to tell you all I know.
As it is, I’ve called, but you’ve turned a deaf ear;
    I’ve reached out to you, but you’ve ignored me.” Proverbs 1:23-24 MSG

“Make me to know your ways, O Lord; teach me your paths. Lead me in your truth and teach me, for you are the God of my salvation; for you I wait all the day long.” Psalm 25:4-5