Friday, February 13, 2009

A surprise in the Dallas Airport

We left the house at 4:30 a.m. to make the plane for my trip to 3dministries in South Carolina on Monday. I got to leave for the airport with my husband, Bill, because his commute to work involves flying to San Francisco on Monday morning and coming home on Fridays! It was a gift to enter into his world~usually I am sound asleep at 4:30 am on my day off Mondays.

Everything was going okay to get there, despite the fact that it was snowing in Seattle again! We got on the plane, everything ready, seatbelts fastened when we heard the dreaded voice over the intercom: "We have a broken windshield wiper, so we have called maintenance." Everyone around me began to freak out because we all had connecting flights to catch, but something happened in me. I began to experience a tangible peace come over me.

It wasn't about the circumstances because sure enough, it turns out that the next flight to Charlestown, South Carolina was 6 hours later than my scheduled flight.

But, I did have an amazing experience with Jesus in the Dallas airport, one that I won't forget for a very long time.

This is what happened. There was a young man sitting across the isle from me on the plane who was also going to Charlestown, so we decided to face this challenge together. We re-booked our flights, had lunch together at a fabulous BBQ restaurant, and then went to our gate. We watched each other's stuff so the other could explore. When he came back, he had found a comfortable lounge and so we moved to it. Then he offered me a Starbucks coffee!

When he brought it to me, I had this overwhelming experience that Jesus was present with me. and, that the afternoon in the airport was given to me as a Sabbath rest. New thought, right? It was a six hour interruption, but Jesus reinterpreted it to me as a gift. I was able to do some of the things I love: read, listen to my IPOD, chill without any other thought of a to-do!

The next few hours were filled with a peace that only Jesus can give. It didn't matter than I didn't reach my destination until midnight; it mattered that Jesus and I, along with the gift of my new friend, spent time together.

And, oh, guess what! I got the chance to experience making a choice to view the interuption as a gift again on the trip home. We were actually out of the gate when we heard the dreaded intercom again say, "We have a strange light on, one that I've never seen before so we will be going back to the gate."

Two and a half hours later, along with an actual plane change, we left the Dallas airport. We didn't get home until almost 5 a.m. South Carolina time. Even though my body is really tired today; the peace and presence of Jesus remains strong within me. He took my very type A personality and showed me a different way to respond to life' interuptions. Sometimes they are just gifts from the One who loves his friends.

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