Raleigh - Durham...A Real N.C. Girl's Perspective

head_left_image

My Christmas MIRACLE!!!

 On Christmas Eve 2005, I jumped out of bed extra early and hit the floor running. I had a mile long list titled, ‘Things I MUST do TODAY or ELSE!!!' The ‘ELSE' part was not an option...as I was hosting a Christmas celebration at my home that evening. I could not afford to waste even one minute...and I did not.

In case you are wondering, I did have a second list...‘ HONEY-DO THIS or ELSE!!!' ‘Honey' was up and running also...all the way out the door to finish some shopping. The morning was off to a great start...everything right on schedule.

Passing my sister-in-law's bedroom, I noticed that a stack of cardboard boxes was sitting outside her door. She had promised to take them to the recycling bin days earlier, and I became irritated when I saw them still there. In a release of anger, I began crushing the boxes...loudly enough that she would hear me...and she did. Then, I placed the boxes out on the back deck...reasoning that I would take them to the recycling bin after I was showered and dressed...the next thing on my list.

Hurrying back up the stairs and into my bedroom, I smiled as I thought..."I bet she'll take those boxes to the recycling bin now!" I paused for a moment and listened...she was indeed running down the stairs. ::MISSION ACCOMPLISHED:: I headed to the bathroom and jumped into the shower...still smiling.

Turning on the water, I had a conversation with myself about whether or not I should ‘waste' time cleaning the master bathroom...as our guests would most likely use the downstairs' bath. I decided that a quick touch-up was in order and should be completed before my shower.  As I began cleaning, I looked at the window and thought "I should open that window and let some fresh air inside. Besides...it is an unusually warm day." Immediately, I remembered that the window was painted shut...that I had not been successful in opening it the previous time I had attempted to do so.

Having almost given up the idea of opening the window, I had one last thought..."I'm a strong woman. I can open that window if I try hard enough." I walked over to the window anticipating a challenge...but to my surprise...the window flew open effortlessly. Pleased with myself, I lingered at the window to enjoy the warmth and sunshine. That is when I smelled it and thought..."but it is too warm for the fireplace...something is not right..."

Grasped by fear and panic, I ran furiously down the stairs and outside...the smell of smoke intensifying with every step. As I rounded the corner, my deepest fears became reality. The whole side of my house was on fire...the natural gas meter and lines engulfed in flames. Instinctually, I ran back inside my house...screaming frantically for my family to wake up and get out. I also had the presence of mind to turn the furnace off as I passed by the thermostat.

Even in her deep sleep...when my daughter heard my screams...she knew that something was desperately wrong. She grabbed her cell phone as she ran outside...calling 911. At that moment, I realized that my sister-in-law was still in her room...probably listening to headphones and unable to hear my screams. I pounded on her locked door, screaming for her to get outside. When she opened her door, I grabbed her and dragged her down the stairs and outside.

By that time, the flames had consumed one side of our home and were spreading across the dry lawn. Wearing my nightgown and flip flops...I began stomping out the fire...praying to God and waiting for the firemen to arrive. Just then, I heard men yelling and looked up to see three of our neighbors running toward our home...one of them carrying a water hose over his shoulder. Working together, we managed to put out most of the flames before the firemen arrived...saving our home from total ruin.

When the crisis was over, the fire chief pulled me to the side and said... "Do you have any idea how blessed you are? Not only did you almost lose your home today...you almost lost your life." He then showed me the source of the fire...a cigarette dropped in the grass. I turned and looked at my sister-in-law...knowing that she was the only one in our home who smoked.

After I explained to him how I had been in the shower and got back out to clean the bathroom...he said these unforgettable words, "Had you NOT gotten out of that shower when you did...your home would have exploded...killing everyone inside." I looked over at my children...standing in the front yard in their pajamas...and began weeping.

On Christmas Eve 2005...God gave me a precious gift...He gave me my children...AGAIN.

 

Written and Posted by:

Elizabeth Nieves - Broker, REALTOR® -- The Elizabeth Nieves Realty Group @ Keller Williams (A Bilingual Real Estate Team serving Raleigh, Durham, Chapel Hill NC and surrounding areas.)

Visit our website at http://www.elizabethnieves.com

48 commentsElizabeth Nieves • December 06 2007 08:14PM

Comments

Wow, what a story, that really was a miracle!  I am so glad that everyone was OK, and hope that the damage wasn't too great to your home. 

I hope this years' Christmas is filled with love and joy!

Posted by Deborah Burns ~ Seattle Real Estate Agent (Realty Executives -BRIO) over 6 years ago
I am numb after reading your story.  Sometimes a split second change of mind makes a world of difference.  I am so glad that your story ended with a Miracle. Not all of them do. We recently had a house fire happen in Brunswick Co on Ocean Isle Beach as I am sure that you all heard about.  Seven college students from USC and Clemson lost their lives in a fire that started outside the home in discarded trash that possibly had a cigarette butt smoldering.  When the news report said that one student had jumped from the home into the water, I knew that it was possible to jump in the manmade concrete bottomed canals from a home.  I have shown houses on that same street and they are right on the canal.  I wish more of the students visiting there had been aware enough to jump from the home.  Although I don't know any of them, as a college parent myself this is a college parents' worst nightmare.  Let's remember them all in our prayers/thoughts this holiday. So glad that your story ended up as a MIRACLE.   Have a Blessed Merry Christmas.  Donna Grady, Keller Williams Realty, Wilmington, NC
Posted by Donna Grady, Bringing Home Results (RE/MAX Essential) over 6 years ago

That is amazing.  You have lived quite a life of experiences.  I hope you write a book, because you can count me as a buyer.  Stories like the one you shared tonight, make you appreciate the little nuances of each day.

Tonight, my daughter (almost 3) had a Christmas play at church and she was in a somewhat feisty mood the entire drive home.  I'm a very calm person, but even I was getting a bit annoyed.  Your story makes me feel bad for the way I felt.

Thank you for the realty check.

Posted by Curt Fletcher, aka "The Likeability Guy" over 6 years ago

Another eye popping jaw dropping story...so sorry that happened to you.  Did you kick you sister-in-law out?  I think I would have at least kicked her around for awhile.  Let's hope for a quiet holiday this year!

Posted by Krista Fuchs, Chester County Realtor - (484) 459-8025 - Home Buying and Selling (Prudential Fox & Roach) over 6 years ago

Deborah:  Thanks so much for your kind words. The damage to our home was nothing compared to what we almost lost. God is so good!!

Donna:  What a horrible thing...especially knowing that they may have been able to jump and live. Fire is one of the worst things to experience. It is so frightening and so devastating...and it happens so fast. I acually feared it my whole life...and I pray that I NEVER experience it again. I have so much for which to be thankful! Blessings!

Curt:  I don't know if I've had more experiences than others...or if I just write about them. Well...I take that back. I have had a lot of weird 'stuff' happen in my life. I never really thought about it as being more or less...just life.

Honestly...I am considering writing a book. The more I write here...the more I have that wants to 'come out'. I'll hold you to your word to buy a copy!! :-)

Krista:  I did not want to talk about that part of the story...but yeah...she left after that...her idea. She had been living with us for about a year...and it really was time for her to go. It was the best thing for her. Now we have a good relationship...but boy oh boy!!! It was not easy living with her.

 

Posted by Elizabeth Nieves, Bilingual Raleigh - Durham North Carolina Real Estate Team (The Elizabeth Nieves Realty Group) over 6 years ago
Elizabeth, Thank heaven for your safety. Not everyone is that blessed. I know it gives you even more to be thankful for this holiday season. I'm glad you're safe and sound. (I hope you really socked it to sis) Deb
Posted by Deb "Alayne" Brooks, 940-500-4010 Wichita Falls Real Estate (Alayne Brooks, Re/Max Elite Group, Wichita Falls Texas) over 6 years ago

Elizabeth, Your guardian angel was watching over you and your family. Roger's mothers house burned down years ago, and he is overly cautious about anything that might possible ignite...  hope  your sister in law gave up the habit

 Ginger

Posted by Ginger Sala, Wilmington NC Real Estate & Relocation~ (Wilkinson & Associates, Wilmington NC) over 6 years ago

Elizabeth - You never fail to amaze me of how truly spiritual you are, a true test indeed. The promptings to listen to that 'still small voice' within you to open that window was truly the miracle. Many times we often disregard that 'small voice' or we aren't intuned to accept it in our lives. Thank goodness you did, I would not have enjoyed or been blessed to have you in my world. I am so happy to know that your family was touched that Christmas Eve and that no harm came to your children and your honey!! Again, you have endured much and we all can learn from your stellar example of faith in God. I'm observing, listening, reading and taking heed. I am hanging on every word my friend.

Please write that book, I know there will be many, thousands, millions that would be blessed to know you and your journey!! You have much to give to not share!! Start today....share your heart...it would make the Best Seller List. GBY

Posted by Gilbert Arizona Real Estate - REALTOR® Candace Robinson Broker Associate, Red Hawk Realty & Property Management (Red Hawk Realty & Property Management) over 6 years ago

Eliz,

You are amazing.  Run, jump, clean, crush, scrub, holler, call, hose, cry, hug, give thanks. Greatly blessed and taken care of.   Do you ever have a NORMAL day?

List and Sell (and everything else you did while still in your jammys and flip-flops  ... what a picture that makes....  ha ha)    Gary

www..RentonHomeFinder.com

Posted by Gary McNinch, Broker, Renton WA Real Estate (Better Properties Real Estate) over 6 years ago

Elizabeth - OK, super serious post and I am most grateful that all turned out well, but you must know I'm sitting here smiling after reading this, right?  Of course the window flew open - I was surprised about the cigarette though, I thought you were going to say she burned the recycling!  Non-violent person I am, I think I would have wanted to smack her one for endangering my children and then hug her for being safe too :)

Jackie

Posted by Jackie Peraza, Home Stager - Framingham, Massachusetts (Perceptions AdverStaging(TM), LLC) over 6 years ago
Elizabeth - This was a frightening story.  I am so glad that everyone was safe in the end.  What a blessing for your family on Christmas Eve!
Posted by Jason Crouch, Broker - Austin Texas Real Estate (512-796-7653) (Austin Texas Homes, LLC) over 6 years ago

I am a firm believer that things happen for a reason - and it is a good thing that your  little angel was on your shoulder that morning, rather then sleeping in! 

It is horrible that your house almost burned down .. but on the bright side your sister in law moved out and now your relationship is good! :-)

Posted by Donna Oehler, A.V. Foreclosure Specialist (HomeBased Realty) over 6 years ago
Elizabeth-Oh my goodness, the fear that you must have felt.  Your story is proof that when He's knocking, answer, and listen well.  You did just that and now you can continue to hug your children and say "I love you".  Elizabeth, this is one of my favorite pictures.  You are such a beautiful example to us and thank you for sharing all of these pieces of your life. Another thing I want to mention to you and something I really admire about you, is that you don't hold anger over anything. You walk in His light and show that forgiveness keeps the heart comforted.   Big hugs to you!
Posted by Julie Neerings~Lifting Hearts ♥ Building Dreams~ (Agent Referral) over 6 years ago

Oh my.  OH MY!   Elizabeth, you have lived through one of my worst fears:  Fire.

As I was reading your story I could see you and your girls and sister-in-law and the panicked run out of the house that you took.   Your husband must have been beside himself when he came home from his errand!  With the fire starting near the gas meter it could have been sooooooo horrible!

Oh Elizabeth, on Christmas morning?  It truly is a season for miracles.   

How bad was the damage Elizabeth?  Were you able to stay in your home? 

Posted by Kris Wales, Real Estate Blog & Homes for Sale search site, Macomb County MI (Keller Williams Realty - Lakeside Market Center) over 6 years ago
Elizabeth, how scary... put how Thankful you are, you were definately being protected. Just goes to show we should all adhere to the little voice that comes to us and not assume it is nothing.
Posted by Missy Caulk, Realtor - Ann Arbor Real Estate (Missy Caulk TEAM) over 6 years ago
He works in mysterious (and marvelous) ways.  So glad that He was watching over you.  GBY, my friend!   :)
Posted by Carol Smith (Casmi Photography) over 6 years ago
You are truly blessed.  I am glad to hear that everyone was ok.  It is all to often and sad that many times a different ending is told.  Not only were you blessed but the neighbors that helped you as well.  If your house would have exploded, I am sure they would have been in harms way as well.  I hope you have a wonderful Christmas.
Posted by Penny Florence over 6 years ago
Elizabeth, what an incredible story of God's faithfulness! Incredible...but, that's our God! I'm so glad he spared your home AND your family. You're so awesome!
Posted by Linda Scanlan (A Fan of AR) over 6 years ago

Hey Elizabeth, Had to post again.  Went to bed last night and thought Wonder if she cancelled the Party that night?  I am sure I know the answer but curious.  I ditto what Candace Robinson wrote because I also remembered after I was thinking about it before saying my prayers and going to sleep that you said the window was painted shut -- what a miracle that it opened for you.  So often that small voice tells me just what to do but I hardly ever remember it to put it in words to use as a testimony.

... except for the Male Voice "My Angel" that told me exactly what to do the moment that I looked in my rear view mirror and saw the car behind me was not stopping.  Time slowed down that moment as I listened and did exactly what I was told to do.  Otherwise I would have been ejected through the windshield. I had a seatbelt on but she hit me at 45 mph on an incline and the front seat of my brand new 1999 Toyota Camry broke so the seatbelt did not work and the airbag did not dislodge when I hit into the car in front of me.  2001 Toyota changed that seatback because I hollered loud and clear.  I got no monetary gain but a large company made a significant change to save other lives.  Now I have occasional migraines because the injury stripped my nerves in the base of my skull but right after it happened I had migraines every two weeks for two years until we moved to Pawleys Island, SC and a doctor there knew exactly how to treat me.  Great post.  Guess I need to join the Rainers Christian group.  Thanks.       

Posted by Anonymous over 6 years ago

Deb:  Thanks so much! God is so faithful!!

Ginger:  She did not quit smoking, but she is trying. That fire did something in her, also.

Candace:  You NAILED IT! And...you actually touched the exact reason I wrote this post. God does speak to us...but many times it is a practical thing He tells us. There was no lightening bolt...no 'James Earl Jones' moment...just 'awwww...you better clean that bathroom BEFORE you take a shower. And...don't ya wanna open the window and enjoy the beauty I created for you?" Our God is a practical God...because He knows that we are made of flesh and bone.

I believe...that so many times...WE (humans) wait for the thunder bolt from heaven before we will act on something. That is why so many people are still sitting around doing nothing. God cares about the small details of your life...and He speaks in the most simple and practical ways. We just have to listen...and then move.

And...as far as my book...I believe it began when I started writing again here at AR. That has always been inside of me...I just didn't believe that anyone would really want to hear anything I had to say. Thank you for your encouragement! Te adoro mucho!!!

Posted by Elizabeth Nieves, Bilingual Raleigh - Durham North Carolina Real Estate Team (The Elizabeth Nieves Realty Group) over 6 years ago

Gary:  What is 'NORMAL'?  I used to think that my life was so different from everyone elses...because of 'stuff' like this. But all I had to do was stop and look at the world around me to realize that the rain falls on everyone...the righteous and the unrighteous. I've stopped asking 'WHY ME?' a long time ago. Now I ask, 'WHY NOT ME?' I've also begun asking...'What do you want me to do with THIS, God?' He is showing me daily...

GBY, my friend! (By the way...my flip flops were melted when I finished...and the bottom of my feet burned black. I never felt the fire on my feet.)

Jackie:  Well...YOU KNOW I wanted to kick her butt across the yard. When she went out to take the recycling...she smoked a cigarette...and dropped it into the cardboard accidently. When I turned and looked at her...it was NOT a nice look. I was soooooooooo angry. (And my body was charged with adrenaline.) I could not even talk to her at first...but God helped me. Now...we are close. Things were really tense between us anyway when she lived with us. She moved from out of state and was only supposed to stay with us for a few months...to test the water in NC. WELL...a year later...she finally moved into her own home. She has changed a LOT since then. The fire woke her up.

AND...about the window. Jackie...I promise you that I struggled with that window for probably 15 minutes just a few weeks before. When it flew open...I was stunned. God is just sooooooooooo AMAZING!!!!

I hope you are doing great! I've been praying for you to get your big project completed so you can enjoy getting ready for Christmas! Luv ya!!!

Jason:  This might be hard for some to understand...but it was the best Christmas I've ever had! THANKS!!!

Donna:  I see that you understand the importance of having the proper perspective. GBY!

 

 

Posted by Elizabeth Nieves, Bilingual Raleigh - Durham North Carolina Real Estate Team (The Elizabeth Nieves Realty Group) over 6 years ago
Wow, what a story. I've always been so annoyed when people who smoke just toss their cigarettes out the window, or out the car window. Not only for the littering aspect, but because of the possibility of fire. This was no doubt quite a lesson for your sister-in-law. Things could have been so much worse.
Posted by Kelly Sibilsky (Licensed Through Referral Connection, LTD.) over 6 years ago

Julie:  I don't know what it is about you...well, YES I DO...YOU are so genuinely full of the Light of Christ! EVERY word you write and speak is filled with that light. You have a gift of encouragement. You have a heart that loves boundlessly. You always look beyond the surface to find the core...the 'heart'. You are such a beautiful blessing in my life. Every time I think of you, Julie, I think about that sunshine coming through your office window when we were talking. That is how I will forever see you...with rays of sunshine all around you. GBY!

Kris: Fire was also my biggest fear...all of my life. My father was a smoker, and he would often fall asleep with a lit cigarette in his hand. Everyday...when my school bus brought me home, I would close my eyes before my home came into view. I had a fear that I would see my home in flames. Once...as we rounded the corner, a fire truck was at my home. My father had fallen asleep in his lazyboy chair and dropped his cigarette. The chair caught fire...with him in it. My mom woke him up and got him out of the chair, but she called the firemen to contain the fire. I was  horrified.

And...YES...when Diego came home...he was sooooo upset. He kept saying...'If only I had been here.' He must have apologized to me ten thousand times that he was not there to take control when it happened. I just reminded him that God was watching over us for him. Diego is a very protective guy.

The damage was isolated to the side of the home with the garage. We were able to live there while the repairs were being done. I remember how thankful I was the day I came home and all of the black siding was gone. It took the grass a long time to recover. God is faithful!

 

Posted by Elizabeth Nieves, Bilingual Raleigh - Durham North Carolina Real Estate Team (The Elizabeth Nieves Realty Group) over 6 years ago

Missy:  So many things come to mind when I read you comment. I think about how people say..."Why didn't I have a warning?" How many times does God warn us but we don't listen? Just a thought. He is so good to us!

Carol:  ME TOO! I can't even imagine..........

Penny:  There are so many layers to this story. My neighbors were truly angels. I did not know them well, but they did not hesitate to run to our rescue. We all celebrated together afterwards. When I sold my home, I advertised that the incredible neighbors were a bonus in the deal!

Linda:  HE is so awesome!!!

 

Posted by Elizabeth Nieves, Bilingual Raleigh - Durham North Carolina Real Estate Team (The Elizabeth Nieves Realty Group) over 6 years ago
Elizabeth, that is a very touching story. I am glad you and your family got out safe. It is times like that, that make you realize just how grateful and thankful you are. Have a glorious day.
Posted by Marey Hoeppner, Your Success Is Our Goal! over 6 years ago
Elizabeth - Truly an amazing story, and you are an amazing woman. Keep telling your story. We're all ears.
Posted by Tom Plant (WINEormous.com) over 6 years ago

Donna:  (I think that is your comment...no name below.) That is amazing about the car accident! What you said is so true...He speaks...we just do not listen. I'm so glad you did! And, I'm glad that you finally got relief from the problem the accident caused.

And...YES...I did cancel the party. In fact, I just sat and held my girls for many hours. I could not let go of them. God is soooooooo good!!!

Kelly:  You are soooooooo right! If I see someone doing that now...I actually stop them and tell them how dangerous it is. They usually look at me as if I am a freak...but oh well. :-)

Posted by Elizabeth Nieves, Bilingual Raleigh - Durham North Carolina Real Estate Team (The Elizabeth Nieves Realty Group) over 6 years ago

Elizabeth:

Wow!!   God ain't done with you yet.

Posted by » Bill Burress Nationwide Mortgage Originator (» Bill Burress Nationwide Mortgage Originator) over 6 years ago
Glad you have a good relationship with her now.  Family is important even when we want to kill each other!
Posted by Krista Fuchs, Chester County Realtor - (484) 459-8025 - Home Buying and Selling (Prudential Fox & Roach) over 6 years ago

Elizabeth,

This is a great post. It has a few layers and you can get so much out of the story here. I'm grateful that your family was safe as well. My house burned completely down when I was about 8 years old and I remember the feeling of standing there not completely understanding, with my young mind, that everything we owned in the world was in that house. Nor was I aware how lucky we were that we weren't in the house when it burned.

The other great story here is that you heard the voice first. This is important because so many are numb to that voice, from years of ignoring it. That you acted is so much greater, because this shows faith on your part as well. 

Great story and a great example of how we can walk in the favor of God by paying attention to what He says to us.  

Posted by Andrew Trevino, Wilkes-Barre Homes For Sale (ADT Real Estate) over 6 years ago

Marey:  THANK YOU! You have a wonderful and glorious day also! Blessings!

Tom:  Awwwwwwww....your comment 'got' me. I'll keep telling as long as I have strength in my fingers to type. GBY!!

Bill:  I sure hope not...cuz I'd like for Him to make me more like HIM! Blessings!

Krista:  You are so right! :-)

Andrew:  Thank you for taking the time to share your story with me. I can only imagine how devastated you were. I'm more and more amazed at how many similar things we have experienced. Maybe that is why I think you are so very cool!!

God does walk with us and talk with us...we just gotta acknowledge His presence. Que Dios te bendiga, hermano!

Posted by Elizabeth Nieves, Bilingual Raleigh - Durham North Carolina Real Estate Team (The Elizabeth Nieves Realty Group) over 6 years ago
Elizabeth,The Lord had and still has plans for you. Look at all the good you've done since than. God Bless You Sister
Posted by Hugh Krone, Realtor, Sussex County NJ (Weichert Referral Associates) over 6 years ago

I agree with Hugh - God is not done with you my dear Elizabeth, I cannot imagine how you must have felt but am thankful you are still here serving and that your sister in law has been changed for the better!

GBY

Grace Safrin

Posted by Jeff&Grace Safrin, SpousesSellingHousesTM (F.C.Tucker 1st Team Real Estate) over 6 years ago
Hugh & Grace:  I'm REALLY glad HE isn't finished with me yet!!! God bless you guys!
Posted by Elizabeth Nieves, Bilingual Raleigh - Durham North Carolina Real Estate Team (The Elizabeth Nieves Realty Group) over 6 years ago
Wow Elizabeth your faith has sure been tested.  After all you've been through you could have become such a bitter person but you've obviously looked beyond the bad side of things and been able to be a caring and compassionate person who doesn't' take a day for granted.  Great post!
Posted by Sandy Noll, Real Estate Team From Mill Creek to Mercer Island ((RSVP Real Estate) 425.890.0878) over 6 years ago

Elizabeth, That's a very frightening story...I'm so glad that the Great Mystery was watching over you and everyone was ok....

Jo 

Posted by Jo-Anne Smith, Sales Representative, Oakville, Burlington and Mississauga Region Real E (Your Choice Realty Corp, Brokerage) over 6 years ago

Sandy:  I hope I NEVER become THAT kind of person. I want to live each day for all its worth. GBY!!

Jo:  God is sooooooo good!!!

Posted by Elizabeth Nieves, Bilingual Raleigh - Durham North Carolina Real Estate Team (The Elizabeth Nieves Realty Group) over 6 years ago
What an experience Elizabeth. very scary indeed and a good wakeup call.  I don't have kids but I woory about my pets the same way when they are in the house and I am not there.  Thank God that you were there.
Posted by Gayle Balaban, E. TN Waterfront Real Estate (The Best Spot Realty/Waterfront Real Estate/Ooltewah Real E) over 6 years ago
Wow...there is a silver lining in every situation...the house is ruined..but who cares as long as everyone got out just fine.  Merry Christmas!
Posted by Rebecca Chambliss (Keller Williams) over 6 years ago

Wow!  That was quite an experience.  Thank God it worked out the way it did.  The Lord works in mysterious ways. 

MERRY CHRISTMAS!  Have a safe one. LOL

Posted by Brigita McKelvie, Rural & Horse Properties & Farms in Eastern PA (Cindy Stys Equestrian and Country Properties, Ltd.) over 6 years ago

Gayle:  I know how you feel. Pets are helpless...just like our children. God will keep an eye on them when you can't. GBY!

Rebecca:  EXACTLY!!!

Brigita:  Merry Christmas to you also!

Posted by Elizabeth Nieves, Bilingual Raleigh - Durham North Carolina Real Estate Team (The Elizabeth Nieves Realty Group) over 6 years ago

Elizabeth, while we have had two close calls, we've never been through the terror you and your family went through.  In reading the story, I was just sure you'd smashed your Christmas gift...I never expected the horror...and like Donna, felt numb at the end.  Thank God you heard that little voice and listened to it.  I'm not sure I'd recognize it myself, but I'll be listening...thanks to your story...You are such a blessing to many of us and I'm so happy you've shared your personal experience with us...We are stronger because of it. 

Now, I will step up on the soap box and suggest that no one ever leave home or go to sleep with the dryer on.  We didn't leave home, but had a dryer fire we were able to put out with a fire extinguisher in 1993 and then in 2001, we had sparks and smoke without fire.  Both instances were related to the plug, not lent...

Posted by Natalie Langford, Winchester, VA Real Estate (Realty Negotiations) over 6 years ago

Natalie:  TWO really close calls!!! Fire is so terrifying! The funny thing is that I so feared it before it actually happened to us. NOW...I have a certain peace that even fire can't take away. God is bigger than the hottest flames. He gave us our home and everything inside. IF it was gone tomorrow...but I still had my family...I'd still be the richest person in the world.

Thank you so much for your words of encouragement. YOU don't know how much they (and you) mean to me. GBY!!!

Posted by Elizabeth Nieves, Bilingual Raleigh - Durham North Carolina Real Estate Team (The Elizabeth Nieves Realty Group) over 6 years ago
Elizabeth: I don't know HOW I missed this post! Many people who don't know God would say that you live a "charmed" life, but we know better don't we? You are a blessed, and highly favored woman. God has his hand on you, and you clearly hear his voice. Amazing and very touching story, and I will definately buy the book. God Bless You, Sis!
Posted by Portland Oregon Real Estate | Alecia Barnes - Broker over 6 years ago
It does seem that God must have been smiling on you that morning.  Thank goodness you all got out safely.  A friend of ours had an electrical fire in the attic on Thanksgiving Day, a few years ago - had it not been a holiday, they all would have been off to work and school, and the house probably would have burned to the ground.  Somehow, it didn't seem like a coincidence then, and your story has some of the same elements - as does Melissa's, that she was unable to get out of the house as early as she wanted.
Posted by Margaret Woda, Maryland Real Estate & Military Relocation (Long & Foster Real Estate, Inc., Crofton, MD 21114) over 6 years ago

Alecia:  I don't know how I missed your comment!! I've been sick this week...not myself at all.

What you said is so true. For those who don't know God...this story sounds like luck. I wasn't lucky...I was protected by my Heavenly Father. I'm so thankful that He loves me soooooooooo much!! God bless you, sis!

Margaret:  When you hear the three stories...and many others that I've heard through the years...it is absolutely apparent that God steps into our lives in a very real way. I KNOW that it was God's protection that got me out of that shower that morning. And...that window...HE loosened that window for me! No one will ever convince me otherwise. Thank you for your gift to Melissa's family!! God bless you!

Posted by Elizabeth Nieves, Bilingual Raleigh - Durham North Carolina Real Estate Team (The Elizabeth Nieves Realty Group) over 6 years ago

Elizabeth, thank you for sharing this story. It is amazing and I feel blessed to read it. Thank you.

Brian Wilson, Zolve.com 

Posted by Brian Wilson over 6 years ago
Brian:  THANK YOU! Have a blessed and JOYOUS CHRISTMAS!!
Posted by Elizabeth Nieves, Bilingual Raleigh - Durham North Carolina Real Estate Team (The Elizabeth Nieves Realty Group) over 6 years ago

Participate