It was early enough in the morning that the continental breakfast at the hotel was still laid out for us lazy ones. Kellie and I began loading our flower-designed paper plates with fruit and bagels to fuel us for a busy day visiting New York.
Suddenly, the fire alarms cut through the dulled talking in the room. A smoking piece of toast popped up from the steel toaster just to my right and I grabbed it quickly to put out the smolder. Everyone watched as a man from a far table quickly jumped up to help and take the blame for setting the toaster on high. Red faced and sheepish, he said, “Sorry folks. I hope they let me back in for another night.” We chuckled uncomfortably as the alarms kept blaring.
At that moment, I realized that the breakfast attendant didn’t seem to know what to do and I still don’t believe she even called the front desk declaring it was just burnt toast.
After a few minutes, the alarms stopped only to reveal the sound of sirens coming from a distance away. Louder they rang until they stopped just outside the door of the hotel. A few moments later, three heavily clad firemen — one holding an iron Halligan hook — bounded into our cafe room assessing every corner. The attendant rushed to meet them and they all declared, “Burnt Toast.” I knew they felt disappointed since they were geared up for a battle.
After settling, Kellie and I talked about how many people were just affected by burnt toast. Our group in the cafe, the staff and sleeping guests in the remainder of the hotel, the firemen and their company and also all of the people made late being stuck behind the fire truck that no doubt took up one lane on a busy two lane street outside the hotel.
Your life is like burnt toast. You may see it as small and insignificant, yet your life’s impact reaches hundreds if not thousands of people – hopefully in a positive way, however. Each day of your existence ready’s itself for your impact [tweet that]. Think about the people you influence in your family. Your interaction with them at the beginning of the day can set them on a course that impacts others. Your conversations, your attentiveness, your simple presence sets events in motion to affect the lives of many, for good or for not.
My sister wrote this on her Facebook this past week:
I was reflecting on Psalm 90:17, which asks God to make our labors worthwhile and effective. I think about the pebble, insignificant by itself, but can cause ripples in the water that can rock a boat. So the way we parent our kids, treat our spouse, carry out our work responsibilities, speak to the stranger in the parking lot – the results will reach out farther than we can know.
Think about the “Burnt Toast” affect you’ll have on people today. Hopefully, they empowered by their interaction with you and do not walk away burnt.