“You look beautiful,” Nancy said as I joined her on the sidewalk in front of school. Thursday afternoon pick-up time and let me tell you, I was not looking beautiful.

Not that Nancy was lying. She called it as she saw it. But she was mistaken.

The day started about three hours too soon when my daughter made a 3:45 a.m. appearance and joined us in our bed. It’s been a long time since she showed up that early, and it’s not usually too big of a deal. But I never really went back to sleep. Instead, I explored how many different ways I could stress over the same issue. That issue being finances, I found a goodly number.

After getting things going in the house, I headed out the door to drop Little Miss at school and take my husband to the airport. The traffic was at a full stop on the highway and my impending heart attack was only kept at bay by incessantly humming “What a merciful, merciful, merciful God” to myself. When I finally couldn’t take it anymore, I reached for my purse, grabbed my phone and messaged both my eldest son and a girlfriend, asking that they pray Byron would make his flight. The road cleared almost instantly. That was weird! There was so much extra time we paid the exorbitant, ha-ha-you-can’t-do-anything-about-it-’cuz- you’re-stuck-in-here-price for a cup of coffee at the airport.

Got Byron sent off and returned home to laundry, home school, general mess, and a list of please-do things for Byron.

When I finally turned up at school, things were none too pretty. There I was in the same clothes since yesterday (well, I did drop them by the bed for the night before re-outfitting this morning) with (can I really admit this in public?) yesterday’s smeary make-up clinging desperately around my eyes. We won’t even talk about my hair.

And Nancy. You should have seen Nancy. She was perfect. Perfect hair, perfect make-up, perfect black sweater and cute khaki trousers, lips and eyes to die for, and a soft sultry voice that would make a room full of men stop and turn their heads. I love Nancy. (Even though she’s perfect!) I really do.

I was discouraged, tired, stressed (she even said I looked relaxed!) and grumpy. But Nancy saw something beautiful.

It got me thinking.

I’m not feeling like a star global worker today. I don’t think I’m doing a very good job with that Ephesians 4 thing of living a life worthy of my calling. I’m doubting, questioning, fearing. A pretty dull light in all respects.

But I think God is looking down and smiling. Not because I’m doing a particularly good job, but just because I’m here. “Oh you gorgeous thing,” I think I can hear him saying. “You are looking SO beautiful today!”


©2005 Thrive


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