I’ve decided to change my name to Calamity Jane. Or get a tattoo that says, “Walking Disaster.” Or both.
Just this morning, I bemoaned the fact that nothing exciting has happened to me lately. Which is nice in real-world time, but in writer-world, that translates to “I don’t have anything interesting to write about.” Which led me to say a little prayer that I should have never, ever said. Ever.
“God, please give me something to write about today.”
Why would I ask for that? Plagiarism would have worked just as well, and the aftermath would have been a lot simpler to deal with.
It was, however, a real faith-builder. I can now tell you without hesitation that God always answers prayer. Yes He does. Just, not always in the way we’d like.
The day started out nice and simple and quiet and peaceful. I sat in my favorite recliner and wrote some, edited some, sipped my chai tea. Fed the chickens. Exercised. Worked some more. It was actually a pretty productive day, when I looked at the clock and realized Superman would be home in a couple of hours, and I hadn’t even started dinner. Plus, I still needed to shower and change.
And that’s when it gets complicated . . . or at least too complicated for my very simple mind. When will I learn to do one task at a time? Not two. Not seventeen. Just one.
I decided a bubble bath would be nice, so I turned on the water. Then I went to the kitchen to put the chicken on to boil. Homemade chicken and dumplings for dinner . . . oh, yeah. That’s when I realized I was out of the baking mix I like to use for the dumplings, so I decided to make them from scratch. Which meant I had to look on the internet for a recipe, which I found soon after I read the Yahoo news page.
Then I measured out the flour, baking soda and butter and mixed it all together. The chicken was done, so I removed it and yada, yada, you don’t need to know the entire recipe. I’ll skip a few bars and just say that by the time the dumplings were simmering, I remembered the bath I’d planned to take.
Now, I’m a city girl. I’ve never lived in a house where the tub didn’t have an overflow drain . . . but guess what?
No overflow drain. By the time I got to my bedroom, I was sloshing. By the time I got to my bathroom, I was practically doing the sidestroke.
Being the quick thinker that I am, I shut off the water and opened the drain. Then I grabbed as many towels as I could and threw them on the floor. I might as well have thrown them in the Atlantic Ocean, for all the good it did. That’s when I realized Superman would be home any minute, and I had to do something, fast. But what?
So I did what any level-headed, intelligent, independent woman would (not) do. I sloshed to the counter and carefully applied my makeup. Then I sloshed to the closet and put on the cute little exercise outfit—the one Superman always comments on. I figured he was less likely to yell at me if I looked smokin’ hot. Or in my case, simmering warm, anyway.
Now, Superman has never yelled at me, not once, that I can recall. He is a man of immense patience. But as I surveyed the damage, I figured there’s a first time for everything. Visions of Ricky and Lucy Ricardo came to mind, and I practiced my cry face.
But do you know what that wonderful man did, when he saw the mess I’d made?
He shook his head, hugged me, and told me it was okay. Then he helped me clean it up.
There’s a whole lot more to this story, which I will save for my next article. But today, I was flooded with reminders that God is patient and compassionate and long-suffering. He doesn’t get angry at my shortcomings . . . only at my defiance. When I do my best, get distracted and fall on my face, He just shakes his head, holds me in His arms, and pulls me back up. And then He helps me clean up the mess I’ve made.
Hopefully next time, He’ll also remind me to turn off the water.
“Then the LORD passed by in front of him and proclaimed, ‘The LORD, the LORD God, compassionate and gracious, slow to anger, and abounding in lovingkindness and truth,’” Exodus 34:6.