If we listed our key responsibilities, would paying attention to children’s progress make the list? It should. What if we listed the responsibilities we should have toward ourselves? Would paying attention to our growth make the list? It should.
Several years ago, after a week’s speaking trip in Wisconsin, I arrived home one night at 7:00 p.m. The trip had gone well, but I was glad to be home. After being in my house for just a minute or two, I realized I heard something.
I walked toward my bathroom, and was alarmed to see the toilet tank overflowing! My first thought was about my Mom warning me against carpeting the bathroom when I bought the house. My second thought was something related to my lack of knowledge about toilets. Actually, I think I was screaming inside, I don’t know anything about toilets!! How can this be happening? I haven’t been here for days! I did know enough to try to turn off the water, but was unable to do so.
I decided to call the plumber. (Brilliant, I know!) Fortunately, I’m friends with his wife so I felt very comfortable calling their home. Mary answered immediately. I’m sure she heard the panic in my voice. She said she’d send someone over.
I went back to the bathroom and was finally able to turn off the water. By now, there was standing water in about three fourths of the bathroom.
Within minutes, a plumber arrived. He was great! He quickly fixed the toilet and then he asked me how I was going to take care of the water. I think I groaned. Inside, I was thinking, I leave in 20 hours for San Antonio and I’ve got tons to do. I don’t know what I’m going to do!
I left the bathroom to get my checkbook. Before I knew it, Buddy had lifted the carpet up and tossed it in the tub. Next, he borrowed a scissors, cut the pad, and tossed it in there, too. Now I’d be able to mop up the standing water.
I realized I wasn’t thinking or muttering under my breath, God, why did you let this happen? You know I’m tired and I have to leave again soon. I don’t think I deserve this.
In the past, I’ve reacted to similar incidents with exactly these thoughts. So, this time, when my only thoughts were prayers of gratitude to God for the amazing timing of my overflowing toilet, I was taken aback. I still remember smiling, on the way back in from the clothes line, as it hit me. I had matured.
I was encouraged by my attitude and response. And, I was overcome with a deep gratitude for God that surprised me. He had grown me. He had answered prayers that I would trust Him and please Him more. Praise Him!
Hopefully you’ll recognize growth. I’m grateful for mine. To God be the glory!