Thursday, October 28, 2010

Waiting for a Reply: Cell Phone Trouble!

"Well, I have had enough! Time for a new cell phone carrier!"

These were my frustrated thoughts yesterday after finding yet again my voice and text messages from friends and businesses did not appear on my cell phone until two days AFTER they were left.

I had left voice mails, sent text messages to friends, doctors, etc. and never had a reply.
I was beginning to develop a complex. Why won't anyone respond to me? Then pride took over after a full day of waiting, and I started becoming angry.
How dare these people NOT respond to me? How rude! I am not a doormat!
Pride was in full bloom in my heart.

Then the humble pie was served.

I waited yet another day and called people again.
Finally, one friend said she had left me a message. Then a business contact also asked, "Didn't you receive my voicemail?"

No message indicators were on my phone; then suddenly NUMEROUS voicemails started to pop up. Two days late.

The messages were there. The indicator was not working somehow.

Still full of indignation, I walked into the cell phone store ready to cancel service. I had been embarrassed accusing people of not returning my precious calls. (Sounds like pride still working, right?)

One young clerk (why are all tech people so YOUNG?) patiently listened to me and calmly said, "You have a bad phone."

It sounded so funny to me. "What do you do with a bad phone? Time out? Spanking?" I thought wryly. (I kept hearing, "Bad phone, baaaad phone," in my head. Must be the result of being a mother and former school teacher, right?)

As if reading my thoughts, the clerk said, "We will replace your phone at no cost. Just come in tomorrow, and we will have a new one for you. We are so sorry for your trouble."

Well, did that pop my arrogant bubble! I was all worked up, ready for a battle.
There was no battle after all. Just a bad phone. Just replace it. Simple.

I wonder how many times I turn WAITING MOMENTS into fictitious battles because of my pride? Does anyone get this?

Waiting sometimes can result in my imagination taking over instead of focusing on the Truth of God's Word and promises. I can imagine how I will handle the situation, what my rights are, what I deserve, how to argue my points, when there may be no battle at all.

Waiting isn't fun, but it can become even worse when I try to take control and give my mind over to vain imaginings.

More serious than a cell phone example is a medical problem I had. Recently, I waited for the results of an ultrasound for my thyroid. I had trouble swallowing. My throat was constantly raw. I was miserable. A friend of mine had the same symptoms and found thyroid cancer. I was scared.

Waiting for the results (why do these take so long, by the way?) I admit my mind started down a fearful path. What ifs? crowded my thoughts.

It took great focus to rest in God's promise of love and peace no matter what storms may come into my life or my family's.

(Fortunately the results were good. It was a wake-up call for me to lose the extra weight I had put on since my mother's recent death.)

Others I know have waited for the medical results without a good report though. I admire how they do not give into the temptation of letting their minds go to fear, but focus on God's unfailing love.

So today, today I pray forgiveness for the pride that I allowed to enter my mind with the little thing of a cell phone problem, the control I tried to have over waiting for answers.

I also pray a blessing on the young clerk who probably wondered, "Why do all my customers with problems have to be OLD?" Bless his little patient heart. Perhaps today when I pick up my new phone, I will display a more Christ-like attitude for him.

Thank you, Lord, for YOUR patience with me as I learn to wait for your answers and direction.


  1. Gretchen, I can relate to the whole of your story... every little bit! I, too, build up stories in my head, expecting a hard time on the other end of the phone about a problem I may be having. It builds and builds and builds as my blood pressure rises and scenarios spin out of control in my head. By the time I've reached a 'real' person on the phone to help me solve a problem I've been having, I'm having to work very hard to be 'nice' when I talk. Usually, it turns out the person at the other end tends to be a kind soul who is sometimes controlled by people overseeing them and they want to help. Things usually turn out much better that I expected and the 'real' person IS real-- genuine, kind, wishing me well.
    When I get off the phone, I feel like a dog walking away with my tail between my legs, head hung, just thinking of all the difficult things I expected to deal with yet, in turn was blessed with God's grace thru this 'stranger'.
    Yet, it seems I expect the worst, over and over again.. Why do I let myself do that? Thankfully, God isn't like that with me. He constantly blesses me with His grace and unconditional love, no matter how much I stew in my thoughts...

  2. Gretchen, somehow, I'm showing up as 'dakwrite' and as 'Debbie Korando'... They are both right. Actually, 'dakwrite' is part of a blog I've been working on for awhile, I just haven't gotten very far on it as far as getting it going. I have the title for it 'Big Thoughts in Little Spots'... It's just taking me a long time to develop it!