when God's grace screams

I had big plans for today.

I spent most of the morning chasing down chickens while stressing out at everyone about a house showing we had later on in the afternoon.

And we had some places to go.

First, we had a meeting for our home school cover school. We, being the kids and I. Even though we will only be here for a month and a half of the school year ( unless Brent doesn’t get the job), we still had to sign up for a cover school.

After that I was prepared to brave the long lines at Chic fil a for their appreciation day, but we got a little bit later start than I wanted because we were enjoying ourselves at the home school meeting so much.

We had been in line at the light to turn onto the street that our Chick is on for thirty minutes when the AC of the truck went hot. I glanced at the engine temperature gauge and it was all the way hot. And lights were coming on and stuff on my dashboard.

ARE YOU EVEN KIDDING ME?! My mind raged. Didn’t I say I was never leaving home again???

I threw on my hazard lights and gave up on the line for Chic fil a. Careening into a parking spot at Panera Bread, I called Brent and proceeded to unleash the crazy. Brent brazenly stated that I should be good at this being stranded thing by now. The man has guts. He did marry me, after all. He was just encouraging me to let the engine rest for a bit when my friend Sheryl pulled right into the spot next to me!

“Girl, don’t tell me you are broken down again,” she teased. Then she saw the look on my face. I was so happy to see a familiar face!

I restrained myself from squeezing her too hard. She and her daughter helped us all inside and even bought our lunch. They headed back home with food for their own family and we made spectacles of ourselves in a booth inside Panera. At one point all you could see of Ezra was a pair of cowboy boots in the air while Titus refused to nurse with the nursing cover on. In between biting me, he was happy to flash the crowded restaurant his “lunch”. Evie was wandering around the restaurant, I think looking for a responsible adult to take her home.

Another mom in the restaurant recognized me from home school circles and asked if she could help. She supervised some of the kids while I took others potty. We chatted for a while and made our way back out to the truck, which I assumed had cooled down.

We all sat in the hot truck while Titus finished nursing. I assured the kids that the Lord was just preparing them to be missionaries one day. I mean, there isn’t AC in Africa, right?

No sooner had I gotten back out in traffic than the dang thing went blazing hot again. Again, I threw on hazard lights and pulled into the Target parking lot this time. If I was gonna be stranded again there was gonna be Starbucks involved, that’s for dang sure.

I called Brent again, and he concluded that I just shouldn’t be messing with things under the hood. He was going to leave work and come fix it, since AAA can’t be trusted. Unless I wanted just enough coolant to NOT run my truck. Humph.

{{ Of note: I was supposed to go get all fluids checked before leaving town for vacation, but getting stuck in Tuscaloosa had changed all that. So, follow me… Because AAA didn’t give me enough gas and I lost a whole day, I didn’t have time to get my coolant checked, and now… Well. Here I was. }}

We bought some nice cold bottles of water and headed for the dollar section. Y’all. The dollar section at Target is awesome this month! Flash cards, work books, children’s classic books, stickers, and cute Dr. Seuss totes to put it all in?! Yes, please.

At check out I explained to the cashier that I needed to group specific items together to go into specific bags. I could tell by her expression that she was less than thrilled so I explained that our car was broken down and desperately needed to create a silver lining for my children. She was more than happy to help.

I also had to explain that I had a receipt for our waters, but Titus ate it. For real.

It was the longest checkout process ever.

Brent arrived just as we were finishing up and we herded ourselves into the in-store Starbucks. I handed each child their bag of activities.

Voila!

$35. That’s what some emergency peace and quiet cost me. Worth every penny.

Brent purchased some coolant and requested my car keys.

“Uuuhhhh.” I couldn’t remember where they were because by the time we had gotten to Target Titus was screaming and Evie was having a nervous breakdown. The child cannot cope with any sort of stress. I don’t know where she gets it from. Eventually we found the keys. In my back pocket.

I’m so glad we had bought all the books and crayons and activities because he was out there for a while. I glanced out and saw a kind stranger was out there under the hood with him, despite the heat.

And a friend texted me and said she was on the way in case we needed a ride or just for moral support.

Oh yeah, God’s grace was screaming.

Eventually the truck was all better and we were on our way back home. I had barely two hours and not a thing done to be ready for showing the house. My plan had been to clean during nap time. But we had just spent nap time at Target.

I put the kids down for majorly late naps anyway. And of course Titus took f o r e v e r to nurse and go down for a nap. By the time I was done I had less than an hour to clean.

I did what any respectable mom with a large vehicle would do. I put everything into laundry baskets and shoved it all into the Suburban.

I instructed Charis to turn off the clothes dryer when our guest arrived, and Arwen and I were just finishing sweeping when the door bell rang. Charis jumped up and ran to the laundry closet like her life depended on it. Then both girls settled on the couch with books like we hadn’t just been rushing around. It was just like that scene in Pride and Prejudice. Only our guest wasn’t Mr. Darby. 

I sure did show the house with three sleeping children.

And she LOVES it.

I think the soap sealed the deal too since I gave her a free bar. The lady can’t wait to move in. Seriously? Is the first person we show it to gonna take it?? We’ll see. 

Brent had offered to stop by Chick fil a on his way home, for dinner. I hesitantly suggested it might take too long. I was impressed when he shook it off.

Until later when he called to tell me it was “Chick fil a appreciation day or something.” Oh, really?

He doesn’t get out as much as I do. And it’s probably a good thing. I need someone on standby to rescue me. He even tracks my iPhone by an app on his. Can you blame him?

So, what sweet things has the Lord done for you today? Did you find His grace everywhere? Cause I’m telling ya… It was there.