The other day my stove died. It died a boisterous death as the broiler refused to cut off, causing my kitchen to fill with smoke and the smoke detector refused to be silenced. A little Internet research revealed that either the electrical circuitry was shot or there was a short in one of the heating elements. Either case translated into new oven.
While I was grateful it died after dinner was cook, I was more than a little annoyed. No stove means I couldn’t have a hot breakfast in the morning and we were going to need to eat out for dinner (sorry but I don’t like the microwave). A new stove would cost money. “New Stove” was not a line item on my budget; we were either going to have to pay for the stove outright (i.e. pull money from some place else) or finance it and spend the next 12 months paying for it….neither option appealed to me.
Somewhere in the midst of my lamenting I realized how lucky I was….
- The stove died after dinner had been cooked. Nothing was lost, rendered inedible and nothing caught on fire.
- I had other food options for breakfast….yogurt, cereal, PB&J sandwich. There are many out there that don’t have an ample supply of food in their pantry or fridge
- I can afford a new stove. Whether I pay for it outright or finance it, I’m not in a position where I’m choosing between buying a stove or paying the mortgage. At worse this is a slight financial inconvenience.
- The stove has never been replaced. In the 16 years we’ve lived at our house we’ve replaced almost every major appliance…the stove has been faithful over the years, it was time.
This little attitude check made me remember that I am blessed but I hate prosperity preaching….”I’m such a good Christian and God loves me so much….look at all of these wonderful blessings I have.” If for no other reason than it implies that people who don’t have as many blessings are bad or God doesn’t love them as much. I think those of us who feel blessed, need to see it as a responsibility, what are you doing with the “blessings” God has given you….
You have all this food…..are you inviting people over for dinner to fellowship?
You have a little extra cash….can you spare a dollar to the man on the corner?
You have a house with reliable appliances…can you babysit for a single mom in need and take of feeding her kids while she’s out?