Wednesday, October 17, 2018

Burning Trash by SUSAN HARRIS

 One of the characteristics of acreage-living is self-sufficiency. One is responsible for the water supply, septic system, and garbage disposal to name a few. Wells, tanks, and metal containers take care of the tasks listed above. Of them all, the garbage disposal calls my name. There’s nothing I like better than setting the cardboard boxes and household trash alit in the old burnt barrel at the edge of the field.

I’ve become at expert at gauging the direction and intensity of the wind, the most critical aspects in burning. Wind is a no-no when deciding to light a match. The flat dry fields with stubble and crops are too risky for a fire; the wild-fire’s name is an apt one—wild! 

My expertise at gauging the winds lies in a very personal instrument. Move over, wind vane, here comes my hair! 

Over and over my hair whipping against my face or flying straight behind my back has halted the longed for fire. 

On a perfect day when my hair lies flat against my head, the fire is lit and the smoke  rises vertically in the air. Up, up, up until it becomes one with the clouds. Up, up up, until it reaches the heavens. 

And it reminds me of my prayers ascending to Heaven. Vertical, unobstructed. Not diverted by currents or the works of the evil one. As long as my heart is free from sin, my prayer ascends to my Lord and King.  

Burning trash has become a holy experience, an object lesson in God’s wide open land. The dross of my life likewise burns always, purifying and cleansing me for service. And for this I’m responsible no matter where I live. 

Susan Harris has been tried by fire many times. She lives to lead men and women to Christ. Sign up for her bi-monthly newsletter at


Peter Black said...

"Burning Trash" - an apt analogy for prayer and for maintaining a clean life, Susan. This devotionally oriented piece shows (as do many of your writings) that the fire of devotion to the Lord glows within you and shines through you. ~~+~~

Susan Harris said...

Awwwww. Peter, this is probably the most treasured feedback I’ve had, “the fire of devotion to the Lord glows within you and shines through you.” That’s my ongoing prayer. Thank you for recognizing it, and letting me know.

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