Why me? Why us? Why here, now?
I don’t have an answer. I don’t have a divine sense of grace, a human sense of accomplishment, or even an animal’s sense of instinct. Case in point – I poured my daughter a glass of milk yesterday, and then casually glanced at the expiration date. It was March 6. Yesterday was March 16.
Most people would say they aren’t cut out for having twins. I might be one of them. It’s not easy to look into the future and see the clock blazing 3:42 a.m. while two little voices wail in tandem, or to figure out how to pack a diaper bag for three kids. When I spend the entire afternoon and evening picking up after my tornadic toddler, I can’t even fathom what it will be like to do this for two of them. I could spend the entire rest of my pregnancy forecasting the potential fright of my future.
But this morning, our pastor asked us to do something. He asked us to think about a circumstance of God’s providence in our lives. And you know what I thought of?
A washing machine.
When we moved into our little farmhouse this fall, the laundry room came equipped with two washing machines. Try as I may, I could not figure out why I would ever need two washers. Two dryers, well, that’s another story. But two washers? Not a clue. So while we had the extra manpower, I asked our friends to kindly take the older washing machine out of the house and put it in the garage.
A month passed, and then the phone rang. Our renters were on the other end, frantic. The washing machine at our house in Lindstrom was on the fritz. Jason stopped by, and confirmed the diagnosis. The machine was having some sort of seizure. It would need to be replaced.
Keep in mind, we had just moved, and spent every available extra penny on closing costs and settlement fees for purchasing our new property. We did not have an $500 for a new washing machine. But we did have something else.
A perfectly good, (if slightly broken in) washing machine, just sitting in our garage.
It’d be really easy to chalk this story up to great luck. Good fortune. Happenstance. But from what I have seen in my short life, that’s not really the way it works. Providence is the fulfillment of a promise from God. It is the visible hand of a sometimes invisible Presence. It is the incarnation of “I will never leave you; I will never forsake you” -Hebrews 13:4-6.
Sometimes, it’s a house with two washing machines.
I choose to believe that whatever I am given, I am given it for good reason. I might not find clarity for my why questions today, and that’s fine. I might tomorrow. Or a year from now. (Or maybe 18?) But in the meantime, that promise of never being left or forsaken fulfills itself every day.
Providence. Provision. Promise. And for those that love a little alliteration, all those things add up to one thing in my book. Peace.