- Listen Live
You know how they say time slows down in your last moments? Or your entire life replays before your eyes in that last minute? Yeah, none of that happened for me but I can tell you, I really thought I was toast. I can laugh about it now, but I tell you what, in the moment, I was terrified.
Over Memorial Day weekend, I decided to grill some food for the family, just like most Americans do on this weekend. I knew that my gas grill was overdue for a good cleaning but I figured I could get away with one more grilling before I had to get that done. I lit the four burners and walked inside the house to grab the food for the grill. When I came back out to backyard, the temperature gauge on the gril was reading over the maximum levels and was making its second pass around the dial. I knew something was wrong.
Immediately I opened the lid and scorching flames came bursting towards me. The entire grill was engulfed in flames. By the grace of God I was able to stay cool and think quickly. I shut off each burner. Then I realized I had to turn off the gas nozzle on top of the propane tank. This is where my heart began to race. I knew I had to crouch down and reach behind the grill to shut off the propane. The fire was raging hotter than ever. I thought to myself, "What if this is it? What if this thing explodes and my life ends?" I prayed out loud, "Jesus help me. Jesus help me."
After I shut off the propane valve, I opened the sliding back door and called out to my wife to bring me the fire extinguisher that we keep in the kitchen. She can running to my rescue. I had never used an extinguisher before so I asked my wife, "How does this thing work?" She replied, "Pull the tab!" I pulled the tab, she lifted the grill hood and I began to spray against the flames. At first, the flames settled down and then they burst back into life again. I held down the spray nozzle even harder. In seconds, a giant plume of smoke rose up from my back yard like a bomb had dropped. The fire was out. Crisis averted.
I think about this situation and realize how precious life is. If I had come out even a minute later, that grill could have exploded. We could have had our home burn down. I could have been blown up attempting to shut the gas valve off. So many horrible alternate scenarios could have played out. But God had a different plan. He saved me and my family and my home.
I have learned many safety lessons the hard way about the grill, but more than that, I've learned that every day is a gift. No matter how badly your day goes, you are still alive. And that in and of itself, is a gift.