18 February 2019
Interesting how things happen. Tonight, I saw the two electricians who were working on some essential tasks at the manse, leaping around with excitement. "Come and see this" they said. We've not seen anything like this.
It had started with the young guy hearing a bang as he reconnected the hot water cylinder. He didn't race off and say everything is OK and its time to knock off. [It was 6.30pm by then] but he listened, looked and investigated. Several loud bangs were heard then silence.
The doorbell rang. His boss had arrived up the drive, summoned to the scene, "where is he?" "under the house" I said, "he's looking at a spark". It had sounded ominous and the electrical smell that had been around for a month was strong again. This time I knew I wasn't imagining it as had been suggested on my previous explorations around the house.
They grabbed me and dived under the house and shone torches into a dark space where a trickle of water was coming down under the kitchen sink. A tiny trickle of water. There in the darkness was a spark, flashing brightly at speed, and electrical wires totally exposed, bare with the trickle of water joining them in a continuous arc of energy.
Maybe a mouse had eaten away the covering, but even to a novice like me the implications were clear. They took photos of the spark, the boss's wife sitting in the van already knew all about it, the news had come on the cell phone on the way.
"Wow you're lucky" they said. "that the electrical work was being done."
Yes, this little spark was quietly sparking away, next to a wooden floorboard. It was only a matter of time, before that spark started smouldering. Maybe a month maybe longer. Maybe while we were asleep or away, maybe when we had our grandchildren staying, it would have burst into flame and set the cardboard next to it on fire.
As they went down the drive, knowing they had really made a difference because they had the knowledge and the integrity to explore what was just slightly suspicious that day they looked really pleased and excited at their life saving discovery. A job really well done.
I give thanks for men and women who use their skills and do their tasks, caring about the outcomes. God works through all of us in many ways and on this starry night, in the human skill and caring of these men.
This young electrician heard something because he was tuned into it.
He was alert and listening and his hearing with understanding had an outcome that saved life. My hearing without understanding could have brought death.
Jesus told a story of a sower. [Matthew 13.23] Where the seed that was sown on good ground represents the one who hears the word and understands it, and then bears fruit and yields a whole heap of good outcomes.
We are told to listen, to be able to hear with understanding when people are crying out for help, to hear when God is prodding us into action and to know when we are being touched by God's love. When we realize that God is indeed among us we too will be excited and want to share our discovery with those around us. And we too will be life-bearers for others.
Rev. Margaret Anne Low
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