Grace for the Not So Graceful
I had one of those days. I woke up stiff and achy – more so than you’re typical forty non-of-your-business woman. I got up, got dressed, walked the dog, then chased the dog and was grateful that I had gotten dressed.
I went to the doctor and got there late. I got some bad news. but I was grateful it wasn’t worse. You all know I have some limitations otherwise referred to as Lupus.The doctor gave me a shot, a prescription to help with the pain, some good advice, and a stern warning. It’s not that bad really, I just have to be better at taking care of me and sometimes that means disappointing others. But that’s another post.
After I saw the doc, I went to the grocery/pharmacy store. You know the one. The big one with the blue sign that rhymes with ‘all tart’. I grabbed a cart and went inside. The wheel squeaked so I got another one. That one squeaked too, so I just kept pushing it.
I squeaked into the canned goods isle, and forced a smile, waved, and said, “Hello” to a small boy and his little sister. They were probably three and five. Their mother turned around and smiled as they waved back to me and then turned back to find what she was looking for. I moved past them and picked up a large can of pork and beans. It slipped through my fingers and landed on my swollen, aching toes. I took in a deep breath as the pain shot through me. The pain just got worse as I stood there on one foot. I put my foot down and the pain felt like a hot poker going up my backside. I let out a yelp and dropped the F-bomb under my breath. It came out louder than I thought it would.
The little children turned around and looked at me with wide eyes and gaping mouths. I bent over to squeeze my foot and pick up the can of beans I dropped. I looked back at the boy as he tugged on his mother’s clothes and said, “Mom, should we pray for her?”
His mother turned to him and said, “As soon as we get in the car, baby.” And she picked up her pace.
I left my cart sitting there in the canned goods isle and walked to my car. When I turned the key, the car would not start. I dropped another curse word and got out to check the engine. I felt relieved to see the children and their mother praying in the car next to mine. They were true to their word. When they stopped praying and saw me standing there they sped off.
Help finally arrived. I wasted no time getting home. Then I realized I didn’t have my prescription.
On days like this it is so easy for me to slip back into bad habits. I scared two little children and the mother is no fan of mine now either. How is it we work so hard on ourselves and still we slip up?
I guess that’s why they call it Grace. We don’t deserve it, but God gives it to us anyway. Over and over and over. As much as we need, and just when we need it the most.
Life, I’ve found out the hard way, is about balance. Get too far out one way and it’s bad for me. Get too far gone the other way and it’s bad for me. Grace brings me back to the center. It allows me to get forgiveness for what even I might think is unforgivable. I can start fresh the next day and do my best to be worthy of God’s Grace. I never will be, but part of loving my God is about trying to be worthy.
What do you do when you’re having a bad day? Is there a way to turn it around?