Okay folks, you all are aware of my ability to put WAY too much on my plate! Well, this morning, I did the ultimate! I woke up early, to unpack my rental car for work and find that I had left my laptop in Wichita at McConnell AFB yesterday! So, frantically, trying not to panic (ha! ha!) I took out everything in my car to make sure it wasn't there in my briefcase, etc. Not finding it, I scampered around trying to get ahold of the person at McConnell to see if the laptop was there - I left her a message at 6:30 a.m., (texted and called) and did not get a response until after 8 a.m. - ugh!!! Yes, those were 2 hours of total panic infused with deliberate attempts to calm down and trust God to help me....When she let me know that the laptop was no where to be found, I panicked even more, of course! I got dressed in a hurry with the intent of driving to Wichita so that I could retrieve my laptop. On the way, I kept trying to keep calm and pray for God's guidance as to where in the world I could have left it. Knowing all the while, I had a very important teleconference today from 12-2 p.m. on which I need to utilize my laptop to gain access and finalize topics for the teleconference. I HAD to have my computer! Also, in the meantime, my work iPhone was not allowing me to have access to email, so I could not even find out what messages my boss had sent me to prepare for this call! Panic, stress, frantic-ness prevailed!!! I was a mess!!!
Finally, after getting dressed quickly, jumping in the rental car, and starting to drive down the highway once again, I prayed one more time: "Please Lord, help me to remember where I laid the computer yesterday. I stopped my car in a parking lot off Lackman and SM Parkway to check the bag I thought I had put the computer in............the same one I had checked a million times earlier this morning in my driveway! And, guess what? Low and behold, the slick top portion of the laptop was not very visible due to the black color on the black color of the bag. It had been there all along!!! I had just panicked and MISSED it!
WHEW...........what a lesson of chaos and trust!!!
My grandmother had taught me a prayer years ago when I was little that has worked EVERY time I pray it:
"Okay, Lord, YOU know where _______ is......now show me!" I am serious. It works every time.
IF ONLY I would slow down..........take a deep breath ( as I teach in my Stress Management classes!) and ask for help from the Lord of the Universe instead of relying on my own strength and frantic-ness.
Now, for the kicker! After I found the computer, PRAISED the LORD with shouts of JOY, I came home to empty the contents of the Rental Car again. This time, I placed my regular computer bag (with the computer in it) behind the car and took other items to my garage. Then, I went around the opposite side of the car to get in to drive out of my driveway and return the rental car. Klunk!!! What??? Get out of the car and see what was making noice..........Open trunk, check. Nothing.........Get in the driver's seat, back up..........Thump! Screeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeetch! What? What's that??? I pulled forward to find I had run over my computer bag - computer and all. The bag I had left on the driveway as I carried other items to the garage.....and totally forgot in my hurried state. My computer bag was UNDERNEATH the rental car!!! UGH!!! If I didn't know better, I would think that I LOVE LUCY still lives!!! In ME!!! Lucille Ball did NOT die in 1991 - she lives in ME!!! YEP - these episodes actually happened between 6:30 and 9:30 a.m. today.........The good news is: my computer is NOT damaged!!! Once again, PRAISE GOD FROM WHOM ALL BLESSINGS FLOW!!!
You might be thinking this could not have possibly happened to ONE person, but guess what? It did. All of it. Every word is true. Thanks to my own frantic behavior, and allowing panic to set in, I experienced one of the most stressful mornings I have had in a very, very long time. And, all because I didn't trust. I didn't stop. I didn't allow the CALM presence of the Lord of the Universe to surround me. I went on in my own strength......panicking......stressing........I did not allow the Comforting, Almighty, Loving Majestic Presence of God to fill me. CALM. His Calm, His love, His sovereignty.
Finally, thanks to a phone call from a very special person named Tim, I calmed down. Tim reminded me that God's love and order surrounds me. I can trust Him. I can rely on Him to calm me down and return me to a place where I can "Be Still and KNOW that I am God." (Psalm 46:10.) What a gift!!! What an incredible gift from the God of Creation. To still the chaos by interrupting my frantic-ness with a phone call from a very special friend. To remind me, I am loved. I don't have to "push through" on my own.......I don't have to rely on my own strength...I don't have to "go it alone!"
Yes, there was at one point amongst all the chaos that I created today, when I calmed down and remembered one of my favorite scriptures: Philippians 4:13 says: "I can do ALL things through CHRIST who strengthens me!" Ahhhhhhhh, yes! That's the ticket!