If you recognize that quote, you are my hero. It’s from a really cute children’s book I remember reading when I was little, Alexander and the Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day, by Judith Viorst. While it’s a very dramatic title, it’s a silly and fun way to keep things in perspective. Alexander’s terrible, horrible, no good, very bad day is part misfortune, part self-inflicted goofiness, and part sour attitude… which is usually a pretty accurate description of me when I have one of those days.
A little over a day ago, my favorite jacket got stolen (hopefully by an honest mistake) from the briefing room. (P.S. If you have a dark gray/almost black Sonoma peacoat that’s not yours, it might be mine. :D) My agitation over that loss has been a pretty decent indicator that I’m still a bit too possessive about my stuff! It’s been very good incentive for me to ask for mercy and grace from God and seek His help with all that Sermon on the Mount business.
Last night/morning, I got a whopping total of 3 1/2 hours of sleep for no apparent reason. I slept from 8:00am to 8:30, and suddenly was wide awake until after 11:00am. For you non-NightWatchers who aren’t used to thinking of sleep taking place in those hours, that’s extraordinarily bad news. So when I got up at 2:45pm today, I was pretty determined to get my hands on some sort of coffee. I had to drop a couple of people off at the staff meeting at 3:30, but I parked and promptly crossed the street to a nearby gas station to get a cup of whatever made-from-powder-mostly-sugar-non-coffee coffee they had to offer. It was pumpkin spice “cappuccino”, and was surprisingly yummy.
As I was crossing the street to come back to FSM for our staff meeting, I was using the cross-walk like a good, law-abiding citizen. There were three birds toughing out the chilly weather on the telephone wire overhead. One of them had extremely good aim. As I am dressed in a baggy hoodie, jeans, and a ballcap right now, my only exposed skin is on my hands. Which is precisely where one of the birds bombed me. The good news is I don’t have to scrub it out of my sweatshirt. The bad news is that it was on my hand. Ewwie.
My first thought was that I couldn’t believe what just happened to me. My second was that it was only fitting in cruel irony that it would happen to me on this day of all days. (I described it earlier to my mom as “icing on the cake…” which is not quite how I meant that to come out. Ew.) My third thought was… “You’ve got to be kidding me. This is hysterical!”
So in some kind of twisted, sleep-deprived way, as my day very literally became a poopy day, it also looked a lot less dramatic and a bit more funny. So whether it was an attack, a fluke, or a divine appointment that little birdie nature ran its course just when it did, suddenly things look a lot more like something I can laugh at rather than something that has to ruin my outlook on life.
Bird droppings aside, I do have to say that God is good. He is so merciful and gentle and gracious with my little heart. He is so patient with me as I freak out over little things that are not freakoutworthy. It baffles me how people can make it without a constant revelation of His tenderness for them and without an understanding of His nearness and goodness. I don’t want to think about where my emotions would be right now if I didn’t know Him. He is kind. He is beautiful. And He is a very present help in times of terrible, horrible, no good, very bad day-ness.
Because, after all, some days are like that. Even in Australia.