In my time off, I've had some time to learn from various life circumstances. Allow me to share. On Wednesday evening, my wife and I returned home to find a bit of a flood in our apartment. Our neighbor's hot-water heater had burst, spilling its contents into our bathroom and part of our bedroom. Long story short, I ended up sucking up water with a shop vac until the later hours of the night.
The next morning I was scheduled to go with a team from our church for the weekly pick-up from the local food bank. We were scheduled to meet at 6:30am; local temperature this particular morning was a chilling 31 F. In addition, the overpasses had iced over the damp night, leaving a number of slick spots and more than a couple traffic-altering fender-benders. It was not looking to be a great day.
Our pick up time was scheduled for 7:30, but the first palate was not loaded on our truck until nearly 8. Neither did our palates of food come quickly after the first arrival. We loaded what we believed to be the last arrival around 8:30. After I was several miles down the road, I got a call asking me to turn around, the final palate had just been pulled.
When I returned, they loaded a top-heavy palate of milk, juice, and sour cream in the back of my truck. At nearly every other stop light on the 15 minute drive to the church, Miguel and I had to redistribute the boxes in hopes of making it to our destination with all the goods. Unfortunately, one whole case of milk toppled out the back of my truck into an intersection. It was deemed an irretrievable loss.
That morning, weary and frustrated, I wondered why I had even bothered. Why not just call in about the flood and catch up on some sleep? Frankly, it was sheer obligation that motivated me to go, but I came to understand a deeper reason to move forward in future moments like this.
In the heart of the Christmas season, we celebrate the serendipity of the Nativity scene, complete with an overstuffed manger for the Lord to enjoy. We wrongly rid the stable of its splinters, sawdust and stink. We make it easy, but for the Lord of Hosts to come incarnate, ease was not a part of the plan. He sacrificed and subjected Himself to the common inconveniences and aggravations of life. So when life demands that you endure discomfort and frustration for the good of others, remember that in doing so you are walking the path blazed by Christ. Be inspired as you gain a greater understanding of the way He lived.
And I'll try my best to do the same.