Honey, I Lost My Keys!
After dropping the girls off at school a few weeks ago, I decided to go shopping for a some new home decor items. Because it was a spur of the moment decision, I grabbed my small wrist wallet, which only had enough room for my house keys, a single car key and, of course, my cell phone.
I arrived at the shopping plaza, parked and after departing my car, I pushed the lock button on my key fob and entered the first store. I shopped for a bit then walked next door to another store. After finishing my shopping, I headed back to my car. While walking back, I did a quick dig inside my wallet to locate my car key. (Ladies, you know exactly what I am talking about.) But wait. It wasn't in the first pocket, so I moved to the outer pocket. It wasn't there either. After doing a quick scan of the shopping cart, I returned to the store. I told myself that I must have left the key at the cash register. But my heart began to beat a little faster because although I remembered locking my car after parking, I didn't recall having it in my hand while shopping. But on the other hand, I was moving so quickly trying to keep a mental note of the items I was on a quest to find, perhaps I was a little sidetracked.
Once inside, I returned to the register I had just left and questioned the woman about my key. NO. SUCH. LUCK. She said that I hadn't left it there and no one had turned them in to her. I also questioned the security guard who stood in the front of the store. I took a deep breath and retraced my steps around the store. She hadn't seen my key either. So, I checked all the aisles I previously visited, and even those I hadn't. Now, my heart REALLY started beating. But I knew I had only been to two stores, so if they weren't here, they had to be at the other. Before leaving, I gave my phone number to the security guard so she could contact me if someone returned it. I went next door and repeated the steps. Still, no success. WHERE WAS MY KEY?
Now, I will be totally transparent with you, since we are family. In the past, if this same scenario took place, I would have broke down and started crying. My flesh would have taken control and panic would set in. Most likely, I would have called LT (even though he was all the way in San Francisco working) sobbing and looking for guidance on what to do. I would have probably even called my mom or one of my friends crying about the situation.
But talk about growth and maturity in Christ!! I didn't allow my flesh to control my actions. I didn't call LT. I didn't reach out to my mom or friends. Instead, I stopped and prayed in the Spirit. I asked for guidance about how to handle things and although my heart was pounding (because my flesh wanted to panic), I remained calm, knowing that everything would be ok. By this time, I only had about an hour and a half before it was time to pick the girls up from school, so I knew I had to do "something." I continued to pray as I walked back to the car. Had I left the key in the ignition? (I knew I hadn't because I recalled locking the door.) I peered in the window and of course I didn't see my car key but I did see my house keys laying on the floor, which was a swift reminder not do that again because if I could see them, so could someone else if they looked in. Lesson learned. (Thank you, Holy Spirit!)
As I walked away from the car, Holy Spirit dropped a plan: Order a car service to take you home, use your spare key to the other car and pick up the girls. (Thank you, Holy Spirit!!)
Right then, I remembered that my spare key, which is shaped like a credit card, was in my wallet! Although I've never used a car service before, I downloaded the app, ordered the car service and within 10 minutes, I was on my way back home.
Now, I'd be less than honest if I said that during this time, my heart slowed down and my thoughts were clear on following the plan that Holy Spirit gave me. Not all the way. Once I got home, I got the bright idea that I would open the garage (via our other car), go into the house, retrieve a spare key for my car and drive my car back home. The Bible tells us that our plans are [definitely] not God's. That logic definitely demonstrates it! First off, once I got into the garage, I couldn't get into our house because the door was locked and even if I was able to get into the house and retrieve the spare key, how was I going to drive two cars?! See! It pays to listen and follow the instructions of the Holy Spirit! Do not add to them! Just do what He says.
Ok, back to the story. Once home, Holy Spirit instructed me to call the stores to see if someone turned in the keys. I called the first store and the person answered said, "YES! We have your key!" Now, my flesh wanted to get an attitude and ask why they hadn't called to tell me. But instead, I thanked the man and told him I would be back to pick it up.
Now, the time was winding down and I had to leave to pick up the girls. So, just as the Holy Spirit told me to do, I got into our other car and picked up the girls. While driving home, Holy Spirit instructed me to get the car service again to take us back to my car. I obeyed and during the car ride back, I was calm and we even played car ride games. It was really relaxing. We arrived at the store, retrieved the key (which the man said someone found in the shopping cart!!), got in my car and went back home.
During this situation, I was reminded of James 1:2-5, which instructs us to count it all joy when face adversity, knowing that our challenges produce patience. Although losing my key SUCKED and not being called when they found the key SUCKED. But there were so many things that I was thankful for that happened in that process and not once did I lose my temper or break down. Things could have been so much worse, yet God provided and blessed me throughout the challenges. And through it all, I was thankful - not for the situation that caused the challenges but for the small victories and blessings throughout. For example, the fact that we even have another car (aside from the one that LT had driven that day) to drive, which allowed me to pick up the girls on time! Also, God blessed me with the funds which afforded me the opportunity to have the means to order multiple car services. I was also reminded a valuable lesson not to leave valuables in plain sight without incident. God is good!
The next time you have a challenge, I admonish you to look at all the positives in the challenge and thank God. Yes, the challenge sucks, but the positives and blessings throughout the process far outweigh them! 💚
If you enjoyed reading this WHOAment, you may also like "Opportunity Knocks"
I enjoy hearing from you. So, let's chat!
*Name a situation where you recognized your maturity and growth in Christ.
*Describe your best experience with a car service.
*What is your first reaction when you face challenges?
*How will you apply this WHOAment to your life?
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