When my tire blew out on the way to work in the pre-dawn hours, it was merciful that I was located very near to a Go-Mart where I could safely call for help. And Susan, the manager at the convenience store could not have been more helpful. She sympathized with my situation and helped to make a connection with the tow truck that would arrive later in the morning.
My co-workers, too, are a kind and loving bunch of people and quickly made a plan for someone to pick me up...even though this meant a 30-35 minute out-of-the-way trek. My delay also meant my 7:30 a.m. patient would have to reschedule for a later time; he was most understanding. In fact, when I was able to see him later that afternoon, he said with a smile, "it was no problem at all [to reschedule] I am just glad you are ok." How's that for a blessing?! Such a generous heart.
At noon, when the tow truck brought my vehicle to our office, I quickly realized I would need to purchase a new tire. The do-nut spare would not be sufficient to make the hour and half trip to my daughter's basketball tournament after work. I had to scramble during my lunch hour and was dismayed to learn the first two tire stores I called were so busy they had no time to help. And then I spoke with Wayne - at the tire store closest to our office - who was very calm and understanding. He told me that although he didn't have my exact tire, he was certain they could find something that would be suitable- and most importantly, in a time frame that allowed me to make it to my daughter's final game of the tourney.
All told, three different colleagues drove me around yesterday, getting me to and from the tire store, waiting on me, going out of their way ...and all with a smile and patience. I am so blessed to work with these people.
By 6:30 pm I arrived at the basketball tournament to see the Patriots in full defensive mode just before the end of the first half. My daughter was on the court, face red and eyes alert -- giving it her all. I sighed with delight just to be there. After only 10 minutes or so, my bliss was interrupted when I realized I didn't have my car key. It wasn't in the usual place in my jacket pocket nor in my purse. Maybe I left it on the table when I paid my admission? I quickly walked back to that area and asked the attendants if I had left my key. They said they hadn't seen it, but the warmhearted gentleman offered to help me look for it. I felt panicked.. did I drop it somewhere in this packed stadium or dark parking lot?
Retracing my steps to the front door, within minutes, I saw my key laying on an empty table by the entry. Someone obviously found it laying on the ground and put it there where it might be discovered. The gentleman smiled and we both chuckled at Providence granting this mercy.
The girls went on to win a very hard fought game and I was there to see my girl make two baskets!! Worth the struggles of the entire day.
Coming home that night under heavy rain, I was thinking of the many people who brought compassion and a measure of God's grace to my trying day. And, it isn't lost on me that these petty struggles are nothing compared with the suffering of others that involve much more serious life events. That perspective is a gift from above. And one that sustained me through the night... even when I was nearly run into the side of a bridge by a speeding tractor-trailer.
I have never been so happy to see the cozy interior of my home and receive the unconditional love of our fur-kids. My anger, too, was short lived when I saw the trash strewn all over the kitchen floor by those same two faithful companions. C'est la vie.
I will recount my blessings and remember the important stuff of life, like relationships, how we treat one another, patience and knowing that God bestows grace through those that love Him. Behold the rose, not the thorns. Thank you Alicia, Bob, Jamie, Sherry, Wayne, Della, Susan, Amy, Melody, Eric, John, Kindhearted Gentleman for lifting me up on a day that was pulling me down. May God shine His face upon you!
Glory to God for all things †