Well this trip would not leave me disappointed. My ride would run late to picking me up but hey, I was cool, I told her to come earlier than normal anticipating this might happen. I pre-weighed my large suitcase and was at 46.5 lbs, right under the 50lb mark (hey, I fly a lot and just know from lifting my own bags now). Again, preventing a possible scene of trying to find a place in my purse to move my 10 pairs of shoes too. I got through security without the normal hitches of, boy, you have a lot of jewelry in the bag, we need to take a better look (hey, I like to be fashionable..I never know what might match better). And for the first time, my gate wasn't as far as usual.
Then it happened, the dreaded "we have to put a pink tag on your small, tiny, microscopic suitcase as this plane is very small and it won't fit overhead, it will have to go under the plane." I said, it wont fit, what do you mean it won't fit (first bite of my tongue)? I called ahead of time and got this tiny bag cleared (another bite). It has to go on the plane with me, it's like a big purse. It has all my valuables in it. "Mam, you will have to transfer all your valuables to your person, the bag can not go, it has to go under the plane." I am thinking, transfer all my valuables..that would be everything. And how and where was I supposed to transfer these valuables into..my person? (another bite).
You should have seen me trying to stuff everything in my purse. I stuff my jewelry boxes, my camera, my medicine, my phone items, and carried my laptop in my hands. But I could not fit my CD's. My easily breakable. CD's. They would have to stay in my tiny suitcase. When I got to next location (Memphis), they gave me back my suitcase plane side. I opened it up to see my CD's thrown everywhere with two of the cases broken. I quickly went up to the next set of airplane personnel and said I simply have to take this suitcase on the plane next time. I shared with them my situation, my phone calls ahead of time, and my crack CD's. Again, I was told the same information. I said, do you at least have a fragile sticker to put on my tiny pink suitcase. "Mam, we do not have a sticker, you will have to transfer the CD's to your person" (now my tongue is starting to bleed). Does it look like I have a place to put my CD's (ok, that one slipped)?
Well, things only got worse from that point. From misinformed stewards to personnel, everyone had an opinion of what I could do with my little pink suitcase. Some said I cold take it and others said no. I did get another bag to move my CD's into but by now, my witness has surely been affected. I didn't lose my temper but put it this way, if after an incident you don't want to tell anyone you are in ministry, this means you lost your witness. LOL.
Well, I wish I could say I found peace once I got on the plane but as I made it to my seat, I continued to grumble about how unfair Delta was, their stupid inconsistent rules, the steward, etc. God would then start to chuckle as He wasn't through with me yet. He put a 2 year old child behind me in the seat that for the next 1.5 hours kicked my seat, put the tray up and down, the window shade up and down and played with her cup of ice. No matter how loud my put my music on my headphones the continuous kicking was overly annoying. Each kick, noise, etc. I would have to continue to bite my tongue as I knew there was nothing the mother could really do to change things.
This is when the great revelation hit, we simply can not always change our circumstances but we can surely change our own attitude in regards to them.
So you know what, if you are going to live this life (whether you fly or drive), there will always be things that will annoy you, try your patience, frustrate and even test your tongue. But, if you remember, this too shall pass and maybe, just maybe, you can still witness to others while you are in it. And by the way, what is my "person?"
Psalm 57: 1 Have mercy on me, O God, have mercy on me, for in you my soul takes refuge. I will take refuge in the shadow of your wings until the disaster has passed.
Kris Swiatocho, Director
FromHisHands.com (Silent Shopper, Greeting, First Impression Ministry)
Yes! Marketing and Design Services
2664 Timber Drive, Suite 307, Garner, NC 27529
The enemy comes to steal, kill and destroy but I have come to give life to its fullest. John 10:10