Laughing in the Rain
By Catiana Nak Kheiyn
One thing has consistently broken during my almost fifteen years of marriage to my high school sweetheart. Like clockwork, every few years, we have another entertaining failure. A double dose is happening right now, in fact, en masse. What is this ever-present breakdown? Car trouble.
My first vehicle, a shiny white Ford Escort, which I brought into our marriage, met with an unfortunate accident on an icy highway. Our first couple-purchased vehicle, a minivan, was broken into one too many times and ended up with an ignition that required no key. The convertible that we inherited literally fell apart on the interstate, dropping spinning pieces across the asphalt before dying in a massive puddle of automotive liquids fifty miles from home. Our truck was driven into the ground and then its window got smashed in by vandals. Need I go on?
This year, we have had one of our two vehicles going in and out of commission. Like intermittent rain showers, one thing would get repaired, then another part would go wrong. Then lightning struck. Our one working Jeep began to have serious brake issues and had to go on standby until we could get it repaired. How grateful I was that I have a flexible job, where I can work from home if necessary. I happily accepted life without a car and emailed the office that I would be at home all week.
Through the generosity of my new boss and his wife, God provided a solution. They loaned us their sporty little Toyota so I didn't have to remain housebound. What could have been a thunderstorm was merely a refreshing spring shower. Fortunately, we have better luck with other people's cars, so I was able to return it, unscathed, a week later.
In the meantime, we got the on-and-off troubled vehicle repaired. We were still down to one car, but one is better than nothing, right? After taking me home from dropping off the Toyota, my husband left for work, and before he could even get there, lightning struck again. The transmission on that Jeep went kaput.
When I received his text message about this, I had to laugh out loud. Seriously? We just returned the borrowed car less than an hour ago! As I sat at the kitchen table, knowing both of us were stranded where we were, I couldn't stop chuckling. I actually verbalized, "That is hilarious."
But that's how life goes, isn't it? Our time on earth is but a misty storm that appears and disappears (James 4:14). Possessions come and go. Why agonize over trivialities like a deteriorating car? The things that pass away in this world pale in comparison to concern about doing the will of God (1 John 2:17). Is His will for me to worry about a broken transmission? Not today anyway. Colossians 3:2 says, "Set your minds on things that are above, not on things that are on earth." He's calling me to trust and follow Him, not to try to understand why these things happen (Proverbs 3:5-6). Besides, God isn't wringing His hands; why should I (Mark 4:39-40)?
Now I'm borrowing my mother's car, working on week two of loaned vehicles in the midst of my misty existence. At least my kids are at home for break, so I shouldn't need to drive much. Thank You, God, for provisions during life's rainy little laughs (Matthew 6:26; Philippians 4:19). It is my daily bread I have been promised (Matthew 6:11), not a sunny, smooth ride to work every day.