Although I began the day yesterday (Wed 12th) with my usual thanks to God and asking for his blessing on our home, children and the day ahead, it wasn’t long before I was in my awful humanness of complaint.
My car has been playing up, some electronic fault apparently, which means I can be driving along quite happily and then, all of a sudden, the power leaves the car and you’re lucky if you can get up 20mph, particularly unsafe when you’re on a dual carriageway doing 60mph! It almost feels like there’s a block somewhere which a good revving of the engine would sort out but it never does, so it needs looking at…again! The trouble is, husband won’t pay for it to be fixed properly and, to a degree, I can see his point – the part alone will cost about half of what the car is actually worth so he doesn’t believe it is a cost effective fix. But that doesn’t help when you’ve got to get the kids to school and a job to go to.
Temporary solution – use his old work car, yuk! It’s old (well, older than mine), it’s dirty (he’s a ground worker) and I couldn’t find all the necessary switches, levers and buttons and… and… and…
And so I went on as I took the kids to their respective bus stops. “Where’s the flaming wing mirror adjustment?” “For goodness sake, why is the steering wheel so sticky?” “This car is a flipping heap.” Now, even my kids knew my rantings and angry questions were rhetorical and so stayed quiet – a mini miracle in itself! After dropping the kids off i head back home to finish getting ready for work, still mumbling and grumbling about the car I’m driving, the fact my own car hasn’t been sorted out properly, the delay getting a new (which just means newer) more reliable car…I was having an Olympian moan.
And then suddenly, the small quiet voice of the Lord whispered in my conscience. Not condemning me, just reminding me,
“But you have a car, Vanessa. You’re not stranded.”
The voice was right. There was nothing wrong with this car, in fact the reality was that right now it was far better than my car, this one worked! Don’t get me wrong, I don’t drive anything posh or fancy, my car is a bit newer and it has lots of convenient gadgets but the similarities to this ‘banger’ I’m using are greater than the differences. They both have four doors, four wheels, a working heater, radio etc, etc. and this one was going to get me from ‘A’ to ‘B’.
So why do I say that was the voice of the Lord? Because my mind was suddenly flooded by verses from the Bible. For example 1 Thessalonians 5:18,
Be thankful in all circumstances, for this is God’s will for you who belong to Christ Jesus.
Another was Philippians 2:14,
Do everything without complaining and arguing,
There is a poem called Humanifeso, which is on a CD ‘The Door‘ by Mark Tedder and The Worship Planet Band and has always touched me. A few lines from this also came to mind:
‘I want to be untouched by my possessions instead of being possessed by what I touch. To test the taste of having nothing to call mine. To hold consumptions cravings back, to be content with luck, or lack. To live as well on water, as on wine…’
How ungrateful I had been. How unattractive that was.
I may not have all the things I want, but I have much, much more than I need. When I woke today I thanked God as usual for my blessings, and I drove the old, dusty, gadget-free car with a little more appreciation..
I need to remember to be content with what I have.
God bless x