On Monday we were dealing with an eye doctor appointment for S (needs glasses, doesn’t want them) and a sick appointment for Rachel and M (neck muscle spasms for Rachel and strep throat for M). Tim stayed late at the church property he was working on to get a load of bricks from the house that was being demolished. Old car, trailer filled with 500 bricks. Guess what happened next? Yup, the car died as he was pulling into our driveway (and that was a huge praise because it could have died in the middle of traffic). Poor Rachel and I had to help him unhitch the trailer, maneuver the car onto the side of the road and begin the process of unloading 500 bricks (with Joshua’s help) up the driveway in a wheelbarrow, one load at a time.
Now this is not a poor us story, but a yeah me story! In years past my first response to Tim basically killing the car would have been to fuss and argue and stress out in the middle of the street (after all, he parked on a pile of leaves last time and burned up his last car!). I don’t do well when cars fall apart and I see dollar signs looming ahead. But I ran outside, offered my help and even kissed him hello. Whoa. Rachel even told me later that I had really changed. Praise God! And in response, Tim didn’t yell at me, the kids didn’t get upset and we got to see God work a miracle. We’ve had his work van for 10 years, a huge record for work vehicles. It’s beat up, falling apart and a real piece of work to look at. But it ran. And I thanked God for it (and thanked Tim I didn’t have to drive it!) We talked to the mechanic the next day and he said to tow it in because it might possibly be something fixable. So we did and he called, told is it was the axle and would be about $200. Praise God and praise God! We had resigned ourselves to starting the search for a new car but God was faithful. I truly believe He rewarded us for our calm response to a stressful situation, something we weren’t capable of in the past.
I need to remember these moments when I beat myself up for being less than calm with my kids, realizing that change comes slowly and requires work. Just as M and S have to work on their “stuff” so do I. And change is possible, as I’ve seen in my marriage and my heart.