Jr firefighter gear Sr. Picture

What I’m Learning from my Brother…

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When I come up with content to share on the blog, I often pull from my normal everyday life experiences. Things that I do, things that I see, things that I hear, and the lessons that I learn about God from living life. Little did I know that one day I’d be pulling lessons, encouragement, and inspiration from my brother’s job.

Take his last shift for instance. Within a 24-hour shift, he got 3 fire calls starting at about 9 pm. The first one ended up getting canceled, so they just did a loopty-loop back to the station. At about 11:00 pm they got called to a mutual aid fire and helped until about 2 am. After they got back to the station and cleaned up, they got another fire call a little after 3 am–and it was A BIG ONE!

In this area the shifts run 7 am to 7 am. He got on scene about 3:20 am and didn’t leave the scene until after 11 am. FOUR hours after the scheduled end of his shift. He didn’t get home until 11:45 (and we live less than 10 minutes from the station)!

When he got home, he started telling us about the fire.

Once they arrived on the scene the house was already fully engulfed in flames. As soon as he opened the door of the truck, he could feel the heat radiating from the fire.

They first tried sending men in. Bradley was just outside the door and 2 other firefighters were just inside that same door, he could hear them, but he couldn’t see them. After realizing that there were holes in the floor and the ceiling and flames above and below them, they decided that it would be safer to fight the fire from the outside.

He told us a lot of scary things that kept Mom up at night and frankly, it makes me nervous just thinking about it. How they were still battling flames at 7 am, the estimation that just one truck dumped 70,000 gallons of water on the fire, and how much danger he (and the crews) were actually in. Even after he got to come home there was still a crew on scene sitting there keeping an eye on things and making sure that there were no little popups.

They would make progress getting the flames down on one side of the structure only to have them pop up on the other side.

At one time Bradley got hot and tired; having to stop and pour water on his head. Other firefighters ended up sitting or laying on the ground for a few minutes to rest and cool off. Only to get back up and continue battling the flames. Bradley also mentioned that they believe the fire started in the basement. They couldn’t enter the structure because of the danger so they laid down and sprayed water into the basement through the holes in the floor…

Once he was finally released to go back to the station he still had to shower and clean his gear before he could go home. Thankfully, the Chief made sure that all the gear got clean and he didn’t have to stay longer than absolutely necessary.

There was a little bit of anxiety with the onslaught of this information and the realization of how dangerous and hard his job is. But I was also reminded of a valuable lesson or two.

“My brethren, count it all joy when you fall into various trials, knowing that the testing of your faith produces patience. But let patience have its perfect work, that you may be perfect and complete, lacking nothing.”

~James 1:2-4

When we go through these “various trials” that James talks about it’s easy to get discouraged; feeling like we take two steps forward only to take three steps back. We get wore out, and just want it all to end, even if just for a few hours so that we can rest. But what I’m learning and what I was reminded of is that WE ARE MAKING PROGRESS. It oftentimes just looks different than we think.

Until next time,

Bailey Sue

P.S. I’ve linked several different movies/shows for your viewing pleasure below. They are all ones that Bradley has enjoyed from the time he was two!