Today, the house worker assigned to the guesthouse in Kenya where we are staying right now came over. Honestly he is more like family as he’s worked in the compound where my in-laws have lived for about 20 years. His name is Paul and he’s one of my most favorite people ever. He comes over to hand wash dishes (because there is no dishwasher) and take care of things inside of the house. There is a fireplace here and while I know some friends are sweating in the August temps in the USA, I’m freezing here in Kenya. We’ve been asked by the workers on the compound why we haven’t lit a fire yet as there is a lot of firewood outside of the house and we’ve never had a good response. We’ve been back and forth to so many medical appointments and running around that when we come home at night, we just throw on more layers and heat up hot water bottles. Last night however, we finally lit a fire! I sat near it and finished an ongoing project on my computer and then we watched a movie.
This morning when Paul came over, he was very happy to see that we had used the fireplace last night! Stephen thanked him for putting the wood in there and that we had really enjoyed it. A huge smile came across his face and a joyful laugh came forth. I’m not exaggerating when I say that Paul has the best smile and is one of the most joyful people I’ve ever met. I’m always trying to learn Swahili from him and make jokes to get him to smile. Even though he’s known Stephen for years, we joke that I’m now Paul’s favorite. All that to say once Stephen said that “Bailey really appreciated having a fire”, the man was on a mission! He cleaned out the ashes and quickly brought in more firewood.
I entered the room right as I saw him carrying a “Cheez-It” box. I thought what on earth is Paul doing with a Cheez-It box and where did it come from anyways?! I’m not going to lie, it also kind of made me hungry. I watched him as he walked over to the fireplace and began to rip the box apart. “Ah for kindling!”, I said as I realized what was going on.
Stephen and I then headed out the door in search of reliable internet. We again emphasized our gratefulness for Paul taking care of the fireplace and how much we were looking forward to another fire on this cold day. As we headed down the driveway in a car, we saw the man coming to repair the electricity in the house (which is a story for another day). Stephen went back inside with the electrician and as he did, the mechanic came to get the car which got hit two nights ago (again another story for another day). So that ended our plans to go find internet. Back inside the house I went and began to work on my laptop as Stephen discussed with these men. Shortly after sitting inside I began to hear “popping” noises. Stephen started laughing from the other room and called out to me, “Paul lit a fire for you!”. Oh my! He took my gratefulness to another level and lit a fire for me during the daytime! Good thing as we were now stranded at the house.
This made me think of having a grateful attitude to the Lord. He delights in us being thankful and praising Him. He is always moved on our behalf and wants to bring us good gifts. One word of thankfulness from our lips causes our hearts to receive more of His goodness. He is always pouring out love on us, but I’ve found that a thankful heart positions us to become more aware of His goodness. I challenge you today to thank Him for something He’s done. It could be something so small, but find something to be thankful for. Tell Him that you love Him and that you’re thankful you’re a child of God. Then wait for His reply. It might just be that your own Cheez-It box appears from no where and that your heart gets lit up with more thankfulness for Him ;-) …but really, I’m craving those tiny cheese crackers now!