In the aftermath of Superstorm Sandy (we thankfully experienced none of it on the west coast), there is much disturbance. Many are still without power and even more are dealing with unbelievable damage and loss. My heart goes out to all who have been affected.
There is disturbance here as well. Perhaps not caused by a hurricane, but the atmosphere is highly agitated just the same. You wouldn’t think it to look outside. Sun shining. Lots of blue sky. Calm winds. A lovely day. Or so I thought when I left the house this morning.
I arrived at the little coffee shop I manage, expecting to get an hour’s worth of paperwork done before I had to open my temporary bookstore next door. I got settled with my hot chocolate, file folder and calculator. Not five minutes into it, our assistant manager informed me that the printer was out of toner and she couldn’t print the daily sales and inventory reports. We have one of these low-end machines that never tells you when you are low on toner, and of course, we didn’t have spare cartridge. So, I told her to save all the reports to PDF and take the totals she needed off the screen instead of a paper copy and I’d go pick up toner later. She looked at me with a blank stare. “What’s a PDF?” she asked. “And what is toner anyway?” Seriously.
After I got the printer issue mostly resolved, I went back to my table to find an email waiting for me. One of our employees had tried to cash her pay cheque and the bank wouldn’t do it because there wasn’t enough money in the coffee shop account. Even though I am the manager, I do not have access to this account. The owner does. And he is in Hawaii for two weeks. Great.
Then my cell phone rang. It was my dear husband telling me he’d received notification that, effective immediately, the service aspect of his work is dropping from 40% to 25% commission. This work is a large part of his day and it’s something the company has been pushing their territory managers to promote. Kind of knocks the incentive out the window, don’t you think?
I finished up my work at the coffee shop and wandered over to the bookstore. I got everything set up for the day, had a lovely visit with a customer, and then tripped over my own feet. The cause of the trip was the sole of my shoe, which I didn’t realize was broken and coming off. I guess I will finally have to retire the eight year old Rockports I have worn nearly every day since I got them. Says a lot for the quality of Rockport shoes.
As I was waiting for the next bomb to explode (funny, how we always expect the worst), a thought came to me. Actually, it was a God thought. There is a disturbance in the atmosphere – the spiritual atmosphere. God is poised to do something awesome and the enemy of our souls knows it, so he is firing all these little arrows in an attempt to distract me from focusing on what God needs me to do. The scoundrel has tried this before. Many times. He isn’t very original. He can’t create anything, so he uses his same old tactics.
But I am on to him this time.
Keep your eyes on Jesus, who both began and finished this race we’re in. Study how he did it. Because he never lost sight of where he was headed—that exhilarating finish in and with God—he could put up with anything along the way: Cross, shame, whatever. And now he’s there, in the place of honor, right alongside God. – Hebrews 12:2 (The Message)