“We have some good news and some bad news,” the airline rep announced to those of us sitting at the gate.
We squirmed in our seats.
“The good news is that we identified the mechanical problem with the plane,” she said. “The bad news is that we need to bring a part from Chicago. It will be at least two hours.”
Groans of annoyance echoed throughout.
That meant I missed my connecting flight and the changes resulted in my 4-hour trip turning into 13 hours.
We waited for three hours. Then the lady seated to my left said, “Why weren’t they honest with us? This is totally ridiculous.”
The lady to my right let out a huge huff. “All my plans for the day fell apart. This is a horrible way to treat their customers.”
And since I’m a mind-your-own-business kind of gal, I said to myself: Chill friends. This delay might be a way for God to protect us from a disaster while flying in the clouds.
Then, suddenly another announcement: “Those of you on flight 2049, approach the counter for a courtesy voucher for your inconvenience.”
I knew it would be a lunch voucher, and navigating to make a line would be cumbersome with my white cane. So I turned to the lady to my left and said, “Would you be so kind as to get the voucher for me?”
“Not a problem,” she said.
Later on, she came back and placed two slips of paper in my hand. “Here, we all got a $200 voucher toward our next flight.”
Woo hoo! Thank you, Lord! I quickly stuffed it in my purse.
Next, I heard the same ladies talk on their cell phones, “You won’t believe what happened. Because of the delay, I got a $200 voucher…I love this airline. It’s the best.”
I’ve done that. Maybe you have, too. We praise only when good things happen. When doors open, opportunities come, blessings show up, surprises happen, and good times appear…we praise God and we rejoice, right?
But when mechanical malfunctions in life cause all to fall apart, we’re left stuck in sorrow, frustration, and anger. Who could blame us, we grumble and complain.
But the one who taught me not to fall for that trap is Habakkuk (I know, strange name). But when I get to heaven, he’s on my list to give a big ol’ hug because this is what he said when he found himself in the gate of emptiness because all his plans had fallen apart.
“Though the fig tree does not bud and there are no grapes on the vines, though the olive crop fails and the fields produce no food, though there are no sheep in the pen and no cattle in the stalls, yet I will rejoice in the LORD, I will be joyful in God my Savior” (Habakkuk 3:17-18).
In the waiting for answers, in the sadness of emptiness, and with broken plans, what rumbles in your heart and what slips from your lips?
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