August 4, 2011

Two Weeks of Chaos (and Seeing God in the Midst of It All)

Posted in Uncategorized tagged , , , at 7:20 pm by Katie

I’ve been meaning to blog about this for a while now, but I kept getting caught up in the every day, especially with returning to my graduate assistantship last week.  My second (and final!) year of grad school has begun – I even signed up to begin receiving job posting emails today (eek!)  However, we have four new FABULOUS graduate assistants in our office that I have loved getting to know over the past two weeks, and I can’t wait to spend the year with them!  ACE is in great hands with these women!

Anyway, over the past couple of weeks, I’ve really had an opportunity to stop and see God’s work in the every day.  I’ve mentioned that I finished One Thousand Gifts and what an incredible book it was.  Among many other things it has taught me, I’ve really begun seeking God’s blessings in the mundane and even in the really frustrating, difficult times.  I definitely had the chance to do that over the past two weeks.

A couple of Saturdays ago, I was super excited to go up to Charlotte and see Logan, one of my roommates from CBSP.  I haven’t seen her since October, so I jumped at the chance to make the 1.5 hour drive up I-77 to see her, especially on the last official day of my summer vacation.  Perfect way to end the summer, right?  I thought so, too.  It was a HOT day, and I made my way north, jamming to some Needtobreathe.  As I exited the interstate to continue to Logan’s Nana’s house, good ol’ Doris (my car…yes, it’s named) started to sputter and struggle to shift.  Immediately, I panicked, because I am the world’s worst when it comes to cars.  I made it to the parking lot of a BiLo conveniently located off the exit.  After some praying, a few laps around the parking lot, and some checking of engine fluids, I determined that my oil was low.  I went in, purchased oil and a filter, added oil, said a prayer – still sputtering.  I managed to get the car to a Goodyear about a mile down the road, walked in, and explained the situation.  Poor guys…I think they could tell that I’d already been crying (yes, I was crying…when these things happen, I become an emotional wreck, haha.)  One of the technicians determined it was my transmission and discovered my transmission fluid was four quarts low (ps…the tank holds nine quarts.)  They refilled my fluid (for free!) and sent me on my way.

After getting home safely, I made my way to the mechanic Monday morning, who then determined I needed to visit a transmission shop and recommended one to visit.  When I got there on Friday, they told me not to drive my car and get it back in as soon as possible to be fixed (not exactly the reaction one wants to hear…haha).  After two days in the shop earlier this week, Doris is fixed and back on the road.

So, what does this have to do with seeing God’s blessings?  Well, as I think over the past two weeks, and how absolutely frustrating they were (did I also mention I managed to lock myself out of my apartment the day after the car fiasco?  Oh, yeah…I did), there are so. many. places where I can point and say God was there.

  • Not breaking down on the side of the road
  • A Goodyear close by with technicians that looked at and refilled my transmission fluid for free (okay, this may have been because they were afraid I was going to break down crying in their store at 5 pm on a Saturday…haha)
  • Making it back to Columbia safely
  • A sweet friend who understood that I wasn’t coming to see her
  • Neighbors who let me borrow their cell phone, no questions asked, and then got me back into my apartment when maintenance told me there was nothing they could do
  • Multiple friends who drove me around this week when I was without a car
  • A mechanic who only charged me $35 to look at my car and determine that it needed to go to the transmission shop
  • A transmission shop who figured out the problem and fixed it quickly without an appointment
  • Parents and a grandmother who are willing to pay for such car problems AND lend me money for rent (oh yeah…did I also mention that our payroll got messed up so that none of us ACE grads got paid on Friday?)
  • Supervisors who figure out how to get us at least 70% of that paycheck before the next scheduled paycheck on the 15th
  • New friends/fellow graduate assistants who kept me laughing all week in the midst of all of this
  • Encouraging words and prayers from sweet friends throughout the whole ordeal

I think, in all of this, it’s evident that  God has His hand on every single thing, every pulse and heartbeat of our lives.  Our God truly is bigger, greater, and stronger than anything that can be thrown our way.