Stop, Drop, Cover Your Face and Roll

This is my sweet Tyler getting his very own firefighter’s hat – it was an exciting day!  I did my parental duty as a chaperone for his first field trip to our local fire station.  The kind fire fighters gave us some homework.  We were to complete a notebook that helped us make a plan for our family in case of a house fire.  The exercise was a really good reminder for me and I realized the boys didn’t know as much as I thought they knew. 

Later that week I was teaching the boys how to make cinnamon rolls from scratch.  After slaving over the dough and spreading out all the ingredients we were finally ready to cook our sweet treats.  While they were baking some of the gooey goodness leaked over the side of our pan into the bottom of the oven.  I didn’t think much of that incident until a couple days later when I was preheating the oven and looked through the window of the over door.  To my surprise a 1-foot-high, 6-inch-wide flame was making its appearance.  For a moment I froze and kept saying, “Fire.  Fire.  There’s a fire!”  I snapped out of my shock, ran to the garage and grabbed our fire extinguisher.  I pulled the plug and then stopped before firing the powdered safety spray.  A doubt had filled my mind.  If I opened the door, wouldn’t I simply fuel the flame with more oxygen?

I was debating my options out loud as and the boys were by my side – taking it all in.  Once they realized my plan of attack (turning off the oven and allowing the flame to extinguish itself while we watched), they immediately reacted.  My 5-year-old simply turned on his heals and said, “I’m outta here”.  Before I knew it he was standing outside on the deck watching through the storm door from a safe distance.  (Just like we had discussed during our fire safety assignment concerning a kitchen fire).  My 7-year-old didn’t go outside.  Instead, he ran to find the dog and our toddler.  In a calm, almost cheery voice, he gathered them together and ushered them outside; joining their brother on the deck. 

I really don’t know what I SHOULD have done with our fire situation…but ultimately the flame went out and all was well.  When everyone regrouped I started thinking about how differently each person responded to the situation.  We hadn’t planned on a flame or a fire – it just happened. 

No one expects a fire to occur, but we still have to have a plan for how to deal with it.  As moms we put out “fires” all day long.  Whether it’s at home or the office there are lots of events and people who can throw a wrench in our well-laid plans.  So that’s when we have a choice – we can let the flame of unexpected crisis overtake us or we can have a plan before the situation gets out of control.

Let’s take the ever-familiar “stop, drop, cover your face and roll” technique the fire fighters taught us during our field trip and apply some new meaning to these terms and our possible situations.

STOP – Stop trying to control everything.  We don’t know how God is moving and what comes unexpectedly might be the exact thing God has for our development and growth.  Stop thinking you know best.  We don’t know what the end result will be or how long the journey will take, so trying to gain control will only bring us frustration and anxiety.

DROP – Drop your expectations concerning people and situations – they will fail you, guaranteed.  No one with a human title should be given the power to fulfill or destroy your life’s dreams.  We are in control of our life, our perceptions and how we respond when the world spins in a different direction than we had planned.

COVER YOUR FACE – I am a big believer that scripture is not only God-breathed, but it is alive and applicable today.  When we know the scriptures, when we have them written on our hearts and minds – we provide a barrier between ourselves and the temptations that come with living in this world.  Know the Bible, claim it’s promises and cover your “face” or I should say “life” with the hope that only God’s words can provide – He gives us a plan we can use!

ROLL – Roll with it – learn, love, laugh and live in the moment!  Enjoy the journey and trust that everyone else is on a journey too.  We can only be responsible for OUR responses and OUR reactions.  Let’s create joy – not drama.  Being flexible means being free to see new possibilities and unexpected discoveries.

Ecclesiastes is a great book – but you have to be careful not to take its words out of context.  King Solomon spends the entire book trying to discover the meaning of life.  He asks why good things happen to bad people and bad things happen to good people.  He was a wise King and in the end found that nothing in life has value without God being in it and that God has a purpose behind the events in each person’s life.  In chapter 7 Solomon talks about how to react when things go badly.  He sounds very down-to-earth when we read his words from “The Message”.  Enjoy this little bit of common sense knowledge 😮

8 Endings are better than beginnings.   Sticking to it is better than standing out.  9 Don’t be quick to fly off the handle. Anger boomerangs. You can spot a fool by the lumps on his head.

If a fire comes your way this week I hope you can stick to it and not let anger boomerang on you.  Our children need us to be filled with the Holy Spirit and focused on what matters most.  I hope our first response to situations or people who through a “fire” at us is prayer.  To pray over them, pray for our response and pray for each other.   We are all in this together and I’m so thankful that you are here!  Feel free to leave any comments telling us about a fire you were able to handle differently than you have in the past.  Growth is good isn’t it? 


2 Responses to “Stop, Drop, Cover Your Face and Roll”

  1. 1 Chrysy huff January 28, 2010 at 10:39 PM

    When Ryne was a little guy I caught sweeper on fire one evening. My kids were 5,2, and a baby. They proceeded to grab the dog go outside without me and get in our then mini van. Ryne rolled the window down and yelled from outside “Stop Drop & Roll mom” ….what a help this was while I was trying to pound the fire out of my sweeper in the front yard! Your story took me back to that night and that moment of funny…..! Thanks for sharing your heart I love it.

    • 2 Kasey Johnson January 29, 2010 at 12:25 AM

      Chrysy – that is awesome! It’s so nice that we have children who know how to protect themselves and at the same time dish out advice :o) Glad I could bring a memory to your mind…I am laughing now and I can’t begin to imagine what laughter awaits – thanks for leaving a comment and making me smile too! :o)

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