My Most Recent Wake-Up Call of Locking My Keys in My Car
“Patience is a virtue” is a tough pill to swallow, at least during times when we need it. It’s a lesson I’ve discovered over and over but haven’t fully grasped. Maybe this most recent test will allow me to understand.
“The Lord will fight for you; you need only to be still.” Exodus 14:14 (NIV)
After a long weekend of skiing in Colorado, my father and I were driving through Saturday night and Sunday to get back to Ohio. It’s a semi-country drive we’ve fulfilled numerous times, so we felt more than comfortable to complete it. Yet, a few hours in, once we made it to Kansas, something very frustrating occurred.
Dad locked the car keys inside our car at a gas station. It was a split second action; the overwhelming wind forced the door shut with the keys in-between the driver seat. I was about to open the passenger door at that moment, but the honk signaling that the car was locked beat me to it.
“Oh shit!” my dad exclaimed. It seemed too close to fathom. Each of us was less than a second away from solving our problem, but that was the hand we were dealt: locked out of our car at 11:30 PM, 5 hours into a 20-hour drive.
“Do not be quickly provoked in your spirit, for anger resides in the lap of fools.” Ecclesiastes 7:9 (NIV)
I tried my best to not become angry, because mistakes happen. However, I was almost insatiably tired, so I knew my patience was thin. We calmly called roadside assistance, and they explained that someone would be over within an hour. Sigh, alright. I figured that was the best time frame for the night.
After an hour, no one appeared. We called and were told 45 more minutes. Dad and I were starting to get irritated, realizing how much time were losing on the road. Aimlessly pacing around a gas station can only do so much.
45 minutes, then the next wait decreased to 30, making for a total of 2 hours and 15 minutes. Yet this time, someone did come to our rescue. He unlocked our car, and we jumped in faster than we ever have before. Not letting a second more pass, we drove off into the night while we were still frustrated and disappointed at the apparent waste of over 2 hours.
“Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways submit to him, and he will make your paths straight.” Proverbs 3:5–6 (NIV)
Eventually on our trip, as it became morning, we passed by several cars and trucks spun off the road or collided into the other. It was apparent that the inclement weather conditions in the late night/early morning had caused this awful scene. We were lucky to be driving this part of the highway with plenty of light and alertness from the morning. Dad, bewildered by the sight, found the silver lining from our earlier incident:
“Locking the keys in the car was a blessing.”
And he was exactly right. That second-long act dictated the remaining 15 hours of the drive. If we had not been locked out of our car and waited nearly 2 hours, we would have been crossing that area during the worst time. We later discovered that it was very serious, more than we imagined. Police respond to 111 crashes in the St. Louis area due to weather conditions Sunday
ST. LOUIS (KMOV.com) — After the freezing rain caused dangerous road conditions around the News 4 viewing area Sunday…www.kmov.com
I pray for all those who were affected by the dangerous weather. Thankfully, there aren’t any reported deaths from the news article.
My dad and I grew thankful with our safety, because we instantly knew it could have been worse. If waiting 2 hours meant we were safe, so be it. We no longer saw that time as wasted, because we now understood whereas we didn’t before, though we thought we did. The picture was still forming, and our patience was reappearing. It proves a valuable lesson:
You never know the why during the what.
“‘For I know the plans I have for you,’ declares the Lord, ‘plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.’” Jeremiah 29:11 (NIV)
As I’ve learned before, but a little more clearly this time, I shouldn’t get frustrated, because it will all work out. It’s arrogant to believe I know why things are shaping up. That will only cause me pain. I must choose peace. For God alone knows my future.
Be patient to see why you “suffered,” because maybe you didn’t suffer at all. Rather, you were saved.