The other day, I had a tough day….no week. I was tired and just fed up. Work was particularly demanding, home was chaotic, and my body was beyond tired. Do you know what I mean?
In my family, I handle 98% of the household duties and work a full-time job too. Sometimes, the walls just begin to cave in, ya know? It all becomes too much.
Well, on this particular day, I’d finally finished a long 8 hours at work and was in a mad rush to pick up a few groceries, fetch up my little person from daycare and start dinner.
Well, once we got home, I began unloading the grocery bags. Not soon after I started, I noticed several items were missing.
Still, in my work clothes, I hurried downstairs, headed to the garage in order to find the items I had left in my trunk…but the truck was empty.
Then, I darted back upstairs to check if I had overlooked the items.
Nope, they weren’t there either.
Then it occurred to me; the bagger didn’t give me all my groceries. So, I grabbed my receipt and dialed the store’s number.
The cheery voice said “Thank you for calling Hyvee with a helpful…”
I interrupted. Sorry, I was tired.
“Hello, I was just at your store and the I think I left my gro….”
The person on the other end of the call interrupted me and began calling out my grocery items one-by-one. She had a slight chuckle.
I was tired, mad, and frustrated. I curtly responded, “Geeez, I’m on my way.”
The clerk quickly interpreted me and apologized, but that didn’t help. I had to put my heels back on, gather my preschooler and return to the store I HAD JUST LEFT!
So, I responded with a rushed “hmmmm-mmmm” and hung up.
I had purchased several frozen items and chicken. I had neither the time nor energy to chase through that store to replace those things nor did I want them after they’d been sitting at room temperature for 20 minutes. “No!” I complained to myself, “they better replace my items with fresh ones”.
As we piled into the car, My little guy whined about being hungry. Then, he whined because it was hot. Then, he said, “I don’t wanna go back to the store.”
This was shaping up to be a HORRIBLE EVENING!
Yeah, with all this, I was getting angrier and angrier at the imposition this store had caused us both.
En route, I mentally rehearsed exactly HOW I would complain to a manager and lament the inconvenience this careless sacker had caused.
Then I heard that voice in my spirit…you know the One.
The voice of God categorically reminded me of the countless amounts of grace I had exhausted in my lifetime.
Suddenly, in my mind’s eye, I recalled the worst mistakes I had made throughout the years and how God “fixed” them for me.
I thought of the many times I missed the mark and how the Lord made those crooked roads straight for me with His forgiveness and grace.
I pondered the countless times “someone” could have complained about me, my mistakes, and my failures and still I suffered nothing for them.
Needless to say, by the time I arrived at the store, I was no longer angry. In fact, I wasn’t even irritated but determined to show the same grace that God has shown to me time and time again.
Remembering my assertion that the store would ‘have’ to re-collect my items, the Holy Spirit told me (made me) go and replace each one of my items myself.
When I entered the store, I went to the desk with a smile and went about the business of replacing my stuff.
I actually did it with joy and gratefulness in my heart because I am blessed to know a God that speaks to me, reprimands me, and loves me so much.
At the customer service desk, the assistant manager apologized. My response was “No, problem. When I think of how many times the Lord was patient with my errors...” She looked confused (and a little weirded out) by my statement, but I got it.
Boy, do I get it!