Hebrews 4:16 – Let us therefore come boldly to the throne of grace, that we may obtain mercy, and find grace to help in time of need.
The last week has been a doozy. I’m in the final month of preparing for my wedding and my boss requests my presence at our corporate headquarters in Winchester, VA. I was dreading this trip. I didn’t want to leave FDH. I needed to make some adjustments to the centerpieces plans. I still have two outstanding wedding projects that need some time and attention. I haven’t made a final decision on jewelry. There was plenty to keep me busy at home. The last thing I wanted to do was navigate my way through packed airports and grumpy people.
However, sometimes I have to put on my big girl pants and do things I don’t want to do.
I decided while I was checking in on Sunday to do an experiment. I was going to wear a smile on my face the whole day to see just how this would impact my otherwise chaotic travel day. Do you know what happened that day? It was the single easiest traveling day I’ve ever had. I didn’t have to race through any airports to get to my flight on time. Each person I spoke to was kind and gracious. There were no long lines I had to wait through. It was INCREDIBLE! When I made it to my hotel that night, I knew God’s grace had been cloaking me since I left Arkansas. I could feel it the whole day. It’s what made my smile stay on my face which directly impacted the way other travelers responded to me. My last couple of trips to Winchester have been challenging. (A large part of why I was dreading the trip.) This week felt different. I felt different. I wasn’t going at this alone this time. I brought God and His grace with me and that made everything better. Don’t get me wrong. There were still challenges (i.e. mid week breakdown about things I can’t control), but overall, it was a good trip…until my flight home.
My flight home was silly early. I had to leave my hotel at quarter to four in order to make it and I still stressed a little going through security. Why must I always pick the slowest lane with the people who have seemingly never traveled before? I had forgotten God’s grace by the time I made it to my terminal. I was making snarky comments (in my head) about every person I saw. I got on the plane praying for the only empty seat to be right next to me. No.such.luck. Instead, I see a rather unassuming looking older gentleman sitting in the aisle seat of the row I’m assigned to. He is clearly unimpressed with my oversized tote. I sit down without so much as a “Good morning!”. I attempted to engage in conversation. He was clearly not interested. How am I going to learn everything I need to know if all I’m getting is one word answers?
Me: Are you traveling for business or pleasure?
Seat mate: Family
Me: Like kids and grand kids or siblings and parents?
Seat mate: Kids
Me: How many kids do you have?
Seat mate: Two
I decide at this point I’m being more of an annoyance than actually having a conversation. I was really hoping for a morning person or at least someone who was as excited to get home as I was, so we could have had lovely conversation and the flight would be infinitely more exciting…instead this is the throat clearing, nose blowing, arm-rest hogging card I was dealt.
When I just don’t think I can take it anymore, I look out my window and see this.
I call these God’s showing off moments. I’m reminded of my Sunday travel experience. I realize there is only one thing I can change in this situation…and it needs an adjustment right.now. It is in this beautiful moment I remember God’s grace. I am not showing God’s grace to this man or any of the people I was thinking snarky thoughts about in that terminal. I have forgotten just what it was that successfully got me through this week and this is when I need to remember it most. I need to remember God’s love for me and His tolerance of all my less than perfect qualities. I need to show that same love to everyone whose path crosses mine.
As we enter into this Holy Week, I’m challenging myself to be acutely aware of showing God’s grace because this is the week leading up to His ultimate sacrifice. This is His ultimate display of love…and I am so grateful for it! I want everyone I see this week to see Jesus through me.