Southern Indiana Living

MAY-JUN 2018

Southern Indiana Living magazine is the exclusive publication of the region, offering readers a wide range of coverage on the people, places and events that make our area unlike any other. In SIL readers will find beautiful photography, encouraging s

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May/ June 2018 • 50 G rilling burgers is as much of an art as it is a science. You have to have a good feel for the ideal thickness of a hamburger patty, how long to preheat the grill and when ex- actly to call the fire department. I had to figure that last one out a few years ago on the fly. I had just run into the house to grab the salt and pepper and returned to find my grill a blazing inferno. Sure, I'd had a few grease fires in the past, but nothing like this. Jets of flame shot head high off the grill. Fire erupted out of the bottom and the sides. The grill was so hot I couldn't even get close enough to turn off the gas. I didn't have time to Google it so I had to think fast on my feet. Was there a way to get this under control without resorting to a fire extinguisher? At what point do I need to call the fire department? How hot does a propane tank have to get before it explodes? By this point I was facing a tower of fire a good seven or eight feet high. I knew I only had one shot before this situ- ation went to the next level so I grabbed my fire extinguisher and hosed the whole thing down until it looked like Christmas in July. On the plus side my wife likes her burgers well done, and I had definitely ac- complished that. The patties looked like lumps of coal. So much for a relaxing eve- ning grilling out. But that's what happens when you let things build up over time. They tend to flare up and get out of control before you even know what hit you. My family had given me the grill for Father's Day the previous summer. For the first couple of weeks, I cleaned it me- ticulously. Then I got lazy. Burger after burger, the grease began to pile up until eventually the whole thing went sky high like a backyard Mt. Helens. I've seen the same thing happen with my heart. If I let things build up in there, it tends to come out in all kinds of dangerous and ugly ways. This happens every time I hurt someone and don't ask for forgiveness or when I'm frustrated with someone and don't have the courage to speak the truth in a loving way. It hap- pens when I sin and don't take it God and a trusted friend. That's why David prayed, "Search me, God, and know my heart; test me and know my anxious thoughts. See if there is any offensive way in me, and lead me in the way everlasting" (Psalm 139:23-24, NIV). The people who manufactured my grill recommend regular maintenance to prevent flare ups and fires, and the God who made the human heart recommends the same. Take time today to stop and pray about what's going inside of you. Is there something that needs cleaned out, dealt with or released? If so, take it from me. It's a lot easier to face it on the front end before it explodes into something worse. A clean grill may save your dinner, but a clean heart will save so much more. • Jason Byerly is a writer, pastor, husband and dad who loves the quirky surprises God sends his way every day. You can catch up with Ja- son on his blog at www.jasonbyerly.com or on Twitter at www.twitter.com/jasondbyerly. Photo credit: Pasko Maksim / Shutterstock.com Barbecue Burnout By this point I was facing a tower of fire a good seven or eight feet high. I knew I only had one shot before this situation went to the next level so I grabbed my fire extinguisher and hosed the whole thing down until it looked like Christmas in July. Everyday Adventures

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