Previous Challenge Entry (Level 1 – Beginner)
Topic: Control (01/30/06)
TITLE: Perfect Fruit for All Occasions
By Georgiana Daniels
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Please Lord, get me out of here!
Immediately my cell phone chirps a little ditty, and I regret not having the foresight to turn it off. Fear comes over me when I look down and see the number of my daughter’s daycare come up on the caller id. Today is her first day away from me.
My boss stops mid-sentence and looks at me with a raised eyebrow. “Are you going to get that?” Everyone turns to look at me.
Heat rises in my cheeks. “Excuse me, I have to take this. Hello?”
“You need to get here quick. Lilly’s screaming, and asking for you.”
“I’ll be right there.” I snap the phone shut. “I’m so sorry, I have to go.”
My boss crinkles his face and dismisses me with a nod of the head. “Hurry back.”
So far, I’m not off to a good start here, and evidently, neither is my four-year-old daughter. A picture of my terrified child urges me to quicken my pace in the parking lot. I run to my car, fumbling with the key fob to get the door open. The daycare is on the other side of town; it’ll take at least thirty minutes to get there. Lilly will be frantic by then.
As I peel out of the parking lot, I tabulate how long it’ll be before I return to work. Thirty minutes there, a few minutes inside, thirty minutes back, all add up to too much time off work on my first day.
Traffic is thick like glue, so make that forty minutes to get there. Clearly, the people in front of me don’t understand that the left-hand lane is supposed to be for faster moving traffic. Basic driver’s ed.
I lay on the horn with a blast, and the person in front of me jumps with fright. Her blinker clicks on, and she moves over so I can pass. Sheepishly, I wish I could peel the Jesus Loves You bumper sticker off the back of my car.
No time for regrets, I must get to Lilly.
Oh great, red light. As I slow to a stop, the woman I honked at eases to a halt in the lane right beside me.
Lord, why am I such an idiot?
Memory verses from Sunday school flash through my head. The fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control. Self-control? What’s that? This is an emergency, I don’t have time for fruit!
Then it dawns on me, do I believe God is in control? Because if I do, then I am free to have self-control in all situations, even when my fruit is being squeezed. Correction, it’s the Spirit’s fruit, and I need to take a deep breath and tap into the fruit that’s already perfect.
The light is ready to turn green. I toot my horn with a gentle “beep, beep” at the lady next to me, and I see her jump again and look over. I’m momentarily caught off guard by her nun’s habit, not to mention the startled look on her face. I smile and wave, hoping she’ll forgive me.
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