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Have you ever found yourself looking at something but not really seeing it?
Perhaps you have shaken your head at a child who insisted that he could not find something he had been instructed to locate, only to point out that he had been stepping over it repeatedly throughout his search?
A different version of this concept occurred to me the other day. In fact, I was so astonished at my discovery that I would have sworn I was one of the unsuspecting victims of the 'Candid Camera' series!
That day, I was in a rush to get two of my children to concert band practice. (Although we homeschool, we are extremely blessed to be allowed to participate in a local Catholic elementary school band. The band director is so generous that he even has provided my oldest daughter the opportunity to intern under him as she prepares to study some form of Music Education when she leaves for college next year! Yes, I know how blessed we are!)
Anyway, after dropping them off, I realized that my gas tank was on 'E', so I proceeded to head off to the nearest gas station. As I picked up the gas nozzle, I turned to remove the gas-cap but my hand froze before reaching it.
Staring in amazement, my eyes followed a thin, golden pinstripe design across the side of the car, stretching from the front door, across and over the gas-cap all of the way to the rear of the car.
Normally, seeing a crisp-lined golden pinstripe would have been no big deal. The problem was, my car had NO such pinstripe!
"What is going on?" I wondered. Then my eyes widened. "No way...did I take someone else's car???" Unfortunately for me, these words made their way from my mind to my tongue, causing a wary look to come my way from a customer at the neighboring pump. Embarrassed, I laughed (gagged was more like it) to hide my reaction, then I hid behind the car that I had apparently stolen. Trying desperately to make sense of it all, I opened the door to check out the inside.
To my complete amazement, I realized that this car was indeed my own, and after a quick replay of the day, it came to me that my hubby must have put it on when he was "fixing the breaks" that morning to surprise me. A quick check of the other side of the car confirmed my suspicions: that side had no pinstripe, which meant that I had taken the car before he had had the chance to finish.
As I returned to my side of the car, relief and gratitude filled me. I stifled a laugh as I looked up and found my gas-pumping "neighbor" staring at me. No doubt, the fact that I was still carrying the pump nozzle coupled with my relieved grin were likely a concerning sight - and I could only imagine the tale he would be telling later on that day.
What is the point of this story?
ALWAYS make sure you are driving your own car.
Just kidding, of course!
In all seriousness, though, I can't help but be reminded of the times that God sends blessings my way; those that I see, hear, smell, taste, and even touch every day, yet of which I take little notice, if any at all.
Like missing that golden pinstripe when I had first driven off in the car, I know that I am missing these detailed moments of grace He is placing for me. And, still like the pinstripe, I wonder how many times I have rushed off, not giving Him a chance to finish a certain moment of blessing in my day.
Let's try harder to take notice of these special occasions of grace He puts into our lives. I don't know about you, but I really don't want to have to be taken by surprise like that again!
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May your Lent be truly fruitful and fill you with longing for His Resurrection!
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Hi! I'm a Catholic mom who loves to encourage and support others in their journey to live the beauty of our Catholic faith in a modern world. It can be a struggle, no doubt, but God has given us the tools we need! Join my family (both immediate and extended!) and me as we take on this incredible journey of our path to holiness.
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