October 28, 2015 Ponder
I was long overdue for washing the outside of our windows at home. Since there are a number of them, I had plenty of time to think about the benefits of windows and why I appreciate them. I admit to giving very little thought to this subject in the past.
I thought about the ranch house in Colorado where I grew up. There were windows – a lot smaller than what we have now, but larger than what pictures show of houses during pioneer days. Those homes, made out of sod or logs, had tiny windows. Originally, they were made of boards, not glass, and could be opened for ventilation. I doubt that people spent much time viewing the outdoors through them.
Today’s windows are amazing. They are durable, developed with double and triple panes for weatherization, and installed in such a way that moisture or wind cannot penetrate the house. Through them, we can view the beauty outdoors, watch a violent wind- and rainstorm, enjoy the creatures that God created, see the sunrise and sunset, observe the sky by day and the moon at night – all from inside the comfort of our home. Great-Grandma would be amazed at the windows I enjoy today. Unfortunately, I do not think much about them. They are just there.
Pondering the convenience of modern windows, my mind went to other things that I enjoy but do not always feel grateful for. The old ranch house did not have running water or flush toilets until my senior year of high school. The oil heater was more convenient than the woodstove that preceded it but far from what I enjoy today with natural gas.
I recall the first time we had lights at the flip of a switch – so much more convenient than lighting a lamp, and a lot more efficient. We stood in awe of that new convenience, but today I flip switches and only think about it when for some reason the light fixture does not respond.
Our neighborhood has streetlights that come on automatically. I arrive home and with the touch of a button, the garage door opens and a light turns on. Inside the house, another button turns on the TV and I can immediately learn what happened during the day – locally and globally. Cold milk awaits me and all I had to do was purchase it from the store – a lot more convenient than how we got milk during my growing up years.
The list of modern conveniences continues on and on. And I am grateful. Maybe I should spend more time washing windows.
Pastor Bill Ehmann