Christian 2 Christian
Grandson Kaiden has a trademark routine he breaks into whenever the unpredictable rains on his parade: Hands on hips, eyes and mouth wide open, he’ll bellow: “Wow, I didn’t see that one coming.”
It’s a funny little bit for a 6-year-old, but the words and their sentiment especially are clichéd and sometimes overworked.
I don’t even have to guess, every one of us have and will continue to say and/or think, in words to the effect, that very same declaration.
Because life is so unpredictable and so beyond our control that we often can’t even see our own selves coming and going from moment to moment.
Hey, the saga of my stiff legs and numb toes is pretty well known in this congregation by now, I think.
And ever since the story first began to unfold some years ago, I’ve prayed to God and hoped for some old time functioning lower extremities.
And although not in the form that I might have wanted, God has given me what I need through the legs of walkers and the wheels of power scooters and chairs.
But wow, even in my wildest dreams, I didn’t see all that coming.
So the key to all of that – which I’m hoping and praying my young grandson picks up on – is keep praying.
Keep letting the Holy Spirit guide and keep trying to learn from the unpredictability of life.
How do we know when we’re learning from it all?
Well, maybe it goes something like this in the combat zone of the eternal struggle:
OK, so my car has been in the shop for some time now and my mechanic’s rep first tells me that preliminary tests say the ride needs a new transmission.
“Oh wow, a new transmission, that’s a pretty expensive unexpected and needed bit of work,” some friends have cried.
But before they could go further, I’d always stop them with: “Ah, when you think about it, that’s not so bad – look on the bright side, it could be worse – he could have told me I need a new engine too.”
Surely enough, after I make that philosophical declaration, the mechanic’s rep calls me and reports that along with a new transmission, my car also needs a new engine.
But I remain calm and I ask the Holy Spirit to guide me through this unexpected situation and all the dilemmas it’s sure to spawn.
I also sit down and recall what I’d learned way back, even when my faith was smaller than a mustard seed:
Never give ol’ sneaky Satan any ideas.
I can just see and hear him saying to himself the first time he heard me list out loud what could be worse in my car repair situation:
“Hmm, Ozzie thinks needing a new engine along with a new transmission would be worse.
“I never thought of that. Well, let’s give it to him.”
I vow that the next time I tell someone that a particular problem could be worse, I won’t say specifically what would make it so.
I’ll just keep that between God and me.
“For this God is our God for ever and ever: he will be our guide even unto death” (Ps. 48:14).
March 18, 2018