I am not a superstitious person. I do not have triskaidekaphobia, which is the fear of the number 13. I don’t think that Friday the 13th, which today is, is an especially unlucky day. In fact, I don’t believe in luck – good or bad.
Today, however, could almost change my thinking on that. The day started out with my cat waking me up at 3:45 a.m., when I didn’t have to get up until 5:30, and I had a hard time getting back to sleep. I had to get up earlier than usual to do a presentation at a meeting for work. The meeting was 1 1/2 hours away.
I made it out of the house in plenty of time, and was on schedule to be early for my meeting so that I would have plenty of time to get my computer set up and my Internet connection set so I could so my online demonstration for the presentation. Then 25 miles from my destination, on the freeway in the middle of nowhere, my car made a loud noise and lost power. I pulled to the side of the road and found that my car would not go forward or backwards at all. My transmission had died.
After making all the necessary calls to those in charge of my meeting and back to work, I called my husband and he drove out to where I was so I could at least make it to the meeting to make my presentation, even if I was a bit late and they had to rearrange their agenda schedule.
I arrived at the meeting location and proceeded to set up my computer, only to find that my computer would not find the wireless Internet connection I was told would be available. After half an hour I finally figured out I had to change a setting on the computer, even though my IT guy had told me it was ready to go. So now I could do the presentation.
Except that we couldn’t get the computer to send a signal to the large TV monitor I was going to use so that everyone could see the presentation. After an hour of trying different things, getting the IT person at the resort to help, and calling IT back at the office, I still could not project my presentation on the screen. The group I was presenting to finally decided we would just reschedule.
So I texted my husband to see if he was still nearby, which he was, and he came to get me. We drove back to my broken down vehicle and made arrangements for a tow truck. Once the tow truck arrived, we headed back home. As we headed into Portland, we suddenly came upon a huge traffic jam with bumper to bumper traffic going between 0 and 20 miles per hour. As a result, I was not able to make it back to my office for another meeting I was supposed to attend.
After such a trying day, we decided to just order pizza for dinner from our local pizza place. I went to pick up the pizza that I had ordered online, and the clerk couldn’t find my pizza. She finally did, but I was delayed so long my husband began to worry and called to see what the hold up was.
So after all that, I suppose I could conclude that Friday the 13th is indeed an unlucky day. But I still don’t believe in bad luck or that this day is destined to be any worse than any other. I do believe that the evil one knows what day it is and very well might use difficulties on such a day to try to cause God’s people to complain, worry, or blame God for all their troubles.
So instead of complaining (I know all that above sounded like complaining, but give me a minute), I decided to focus on the good things that happened today. Several times today I said aloud, “It could have been worse.”
I might not have been able to get my car to the side of the road in time and ended up in a terrible accident. It could have been pouring down rain instead of being a beautiful sunny day. This is, after all, the Pacific Northwest! I could have been stranded in the Gorge several miles from any town without a cell phone. I could have had no one to call that would help. But I did have my cell phone and I have my wonderful husband who came to help. When I got home, my sweet little dog was there to greet me with his wagging tail. And I didn’t have to cook dinner because we have pizza close by; plus one of my pizzas was free because I had enough Papa John’s points.
Right before my car broke down, I was listening to Third Day’s debut album, and twice listened to the song “Livin’ For Jesus.” It was the song I needed to hear to prepare me for the day. The first verse and chorus are:
Sometimes things don’t work out quite the way
that you wanted them to
Sometimes people don’t do all the things
that you wanted them to
There are times when
the answers aren’t easy to see
Sometimes we’re on a road
going back to a place we never wanted to be
Well that’s alright
I’m just fine. Done made up my mind
that I’m livin’ for Jesus
There will still be the mechanics bill to pay to get my car fixed, and I have to figure out how I’m going to get to work on Monday. But it will all be fine. God will be with me and I will be able to endure whatever is to come. Things in this world will never be perfect and won’t always go the way I want. But it’s okay. I’m livin’ for Jesus.