Caution When The Match Strikes

“Don’t play with matches.”

That’s long been the warning about just one strike of a match.

Others stressed: “Don’t play with fire,” as there are identical consequences.

Wind was brisk, but those brush piles continued to worry us. We grabbed the kitchen matches along with old papers as starting fuel and attempted to start a fire.

Despite the box indicating “Strike Anywhere,” those matches didn’t flash on the box, our coat zipper, a rock, nowhere.

Stores in town didn’t have any, so we concluded matches must be a thing of the past.

Today, smoking isn’t common, and evidently those who do prefer lighters.

Apparently, similar devices are being used for igniting stoves, water heaters, and barbeque grills.

Come to think of it, those starting-gadgets are used for church candles, too.

Obviously, we’re not much of a firebug. Only time we need fire is to burn trash, and there had always been matches available.

Unable to rub sticks or stones to start fire like the Indians and pioneers, we had to have matches. Scrounging around home, we finally recovered two more boxes. Despite orders:  “Strike On Box,” the dang things wouldn’t flare there either.

A book of matches didn’t encourage us, because we always burn our finger, but can never light a fire. Smokers used gophers, as they’re also called, in yesteryear; 20 cigarettes to a pack and 20 matches to a book: clearly planned.

Matchbooks were common company promotional pieces, and our favorite priest had a large collection.

Penny boxes were popular, too, but now they’re a quarter or more. Dad usually carried a box.

Our good cowboy friend reminded us recently how unusual and memorable it was to him when Dad on his spotted mare (Queen), would light his pipe with just one hand, the only one he had.

Finally located one of those propane lighters, got the brush burned, and bought three boxes of kitchen matches, so we won’t have that problem again.

Reminds us of Isaiah 50:10: “If you’re after trouble, play with fire, and see who gets burned.”

Of course, we can’t help but appreciate Second Kings 2:11: “As they were walking , suddenly a chariot of fire appeared, drawn by horses of fire, and drove between the men, separating them, and Elijah was carried by a whirlwind into heaven.”