Sep 6, 2013

Life Happens


So, this isn't the most encouraging of posts but it is our life none-the-less and something we will always want to remember for it's moments like these that shape us the most.  Last week Chuck was unexpectedly laid off.  He went from working his dream job to being told he couldn't come back due to no fault of his own just that the company needed to downsize.  The effect this had on him was like being sucker punched in the gut.  He was in shock for a full day.  God was so gracious to give me a premonition that this was about to happen the morning he went to meet with his boss.  I was ready, by the grace of God alone, to be the strong one and support him as he reeled.  He took it in stride and constantly kept a positive outlook always telling me, "hey, it could be worse...we didn't just get news that one of us has a terminal illness, we'll make it through this."  It's all about perspective.  And trust.

Fast forward a week and Chuck has already gone on several job interviews.  The design community and network of friends and colleagues he has is amazing.  He was looking forward to going to downtown Minneapolis for the first of these interviews.  However, he got lost on his way into the city. He accidentally took a wrong turn and couldn't turn around again for like 10 miles.  Plus his phone died and he couldn't look up directions on how to get back.  He was thinking he'd just not go, he didn't want to be late to an interview, plus he wasn't all that excited about this place.  Miraculously, he finds his way back, finds an open parking spot across the street from the building and puts in enough quarters for 1 1/2 hours (he felt he was being overly generous with the time).  

He ends up talking to 6 people during this 3 hour interview.  He comes out of the meeting at 6:30pm. His interview began at 3pm.  He goes to look for his car and can't find it. At this point, he called me said he was low on battery and that he was going to go look for his car.  Somehow he figured out it was at the impound lot.  He found the lot on his maps app and then his phone dies for good.  He burns the directions into his brain and sets out to walk the 2 miles.  

He just so happens to be in the shady side of town where all the bums hang out.  He walked 2 miles past all the bums.  At one point he sees a man sleeping under the bushes and realizes things could be a lot worse....but he's still mad as a hornet.  He gets to the impound lot and there are alot of other people waiting too.  20 minutes and $130 later he leaves with his car to drive home - in rush hour.   He told me later that he stopped at 2 different gas stations to ask to use their phone to call me so that I wouldn't be worried.  Both times he was denied.  Just more nails for him to chew as he was driving home like a maniac. 

I had to pick Gavin up from tae-kwon-do at 8pm.  I left at 7:50 to get him.  I decided that if Chuck wasn't back by time I got home I'd drive into the city and just start looking for him thinking maybe he assaulted the impound lot guy and was in a holding cell or got assaulted himself along the way. Miraculously, he pulled into the driveway as I was pulling out.

Later that night as he was tucking Bennett into bed and retelling his tale of woe, Bennett said, "Dad, I don't believe in coincidence.  I think God wanted you to see that bum.  That was meant to remind you that things can always be worse."  Great minds think alike. :)

No, he doesn't have a job yet.  But that's okay.  We're in God's hands...the best place of all to be.  We can't only trust him when everything is going our way.  The test of our faith is if we really trust him when things are at their worst, when we have lost control and can't find our way.  He will guide us down the path we should go, we have no doubt.  Sometimes it's dark and bleak looking during the waiting time but that is also the growing time and I wouldn't want to change a thing.  We're enjoying this little surprise gift of extra time together.  And we're "counting it all joy when you meet trials of various kinds knowing that the testing of our faith produces steadfastness" (James 1:2).

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