Well, it didn't take long to diagnose the cause of the flat. A long headless screw stuck out of my tire. It was easy to diagnose but hard to repair. The screw would not budge from the tire. I asked the gas station attendant if I could borrow a pliers; she checked and they had none. I went back to my bike, and after several minutes I pried that screw from the tire. I placed a patch on the inner tube and began to pump.
However, life still wasn't that easy. The tube would not inflate. I thought my pump went bad. So, I went back to the attendant to ask for change in order to use the tire pump machine at the station. That tire pump inflated my tire quickly, but in less than five seconds it was flat again. Now what do you do?
For the third time I went back to the attendant. This time I asked to borrow their phone. She graciously gave me one. (I wonder if she was so helpful, because I looked so pathetic.) Anyway, I called home expecting my son to answer; I did not think his college class began until later in the morning. No one answered, so I left a message about where I was and what I was doing - walking home. I thought he might be indisposed and could not get to the phone, but I hoped he would listen to the message and then come and get me. I thought wrong.
Thus, I began to hike my bike to my house; it was a distance of about five miles. I kept looking for my son to pull up by the side of the road, but it never happened. Thoughts of anger passed through my mind, but how could I be angry if I didn't even know his story. I kept hoping - uselessly. I occupied my mind, and fought off all wrong thoughts, by reciting some of my memory work. I recited John 14-17 on the way home. I had a flat around John 13:20 on my way to Walmart. Once I realized that I forgotten to complete John 13, I did that also. By the time I returned home 1 1/2 hours later, I discovered an empty house. I replaced the inner tube, for there had been another hole in the tube also. Then, I began my day the way I planned it - about two hours later.
Why do I tell you this story? Because God provided peace in the midst of an irritating or difficult time. We do not need to allow difficult times to destroy us. We do not need to allow ourselves to be engulfed by anger, frustration, depression, or any other emotion. We can fight off all these destructive emotions through the help of
God and his Word. By the way, this ended up to be a good example; I could share with you many more bad examples. But I believe God is patiently helping me grow in how I respond to difficult times.
If you Google "Redd Harper" and his song "I am satisfied," you will be able to listen to stories and a chorus of how to respond difficult times. I listened to his on a 45 LP when I was a child. The chorus is simple, "I am satisfied, I am satisfied, Satisfied to know that my Savior loves me so. I am satisfied, I am satisfied, Satisfied to know He loves me." After each chorus, he tells a story of some accident that could make people upset. I used to think that song was corny and impossible to do. Now I know the song is possible through Jesus, but yes, it still is corny. As we grow closer to God, we can experience calmness and peace in the midst of the most frustrating or irritating or difficult situations.
By the way, where was my son? I must have called when he was in the shower. He didn't know anyone called; thus he didn't check for any messages.