The sun had set, and darkness engulfed the 350,000 London residents. Shopkeepers closed their doors and prepared for bed. The king’s baker, Thomas Farrinor, who lived in Pudding Lane, stopped baking and doused his fire. However, he failed to put it out. After midnight on Sept 2, 1666, a spark escaped the oven and lit kindling nearby. Flames soon consumed the house, but Farrinor and his family escaped out a second-story window.

The city had no firefighters and was experiencing a drought, so the blaze licked up closely packed wooden houses nearby. Neighbors lined up to throw buckets of water on the fire, and churches rang their bells to warn sleeping residents. The fire headed toward warehouses on Thames Street filled with
tallow, oil, spirits, and coal. The buildings exploded into flame. Aided by a strong wind, the fire burned out of control, and people could see the flames 30 miles away.

People eventually gave up fighting the fire and rushed to save their families and possessions. The fire raged until Sept 6 and destroyed 13, 000 homes and 38 churches, including St Paul’s cathedral. Mr. Farrinor and his family survived. Can you imagine how he felt? His oversight caused a huge disaster.
People still associate his name with the Great Fire of London. What a sad legacy.

As we enter 2024, consider the legacy you want to leave. Would you rather people remember your good character or your reputation for helping others? Choose goals based on what you want to accomplish.

2 Timothy 4:7-8 says, “I have fought the good fight, I have finished the race, I have kept the faith. Henceforth there is laid up for me the crown of righteousness, which the Lord, the righteous judge, will award to me on that day…”

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