Serendipitous… I love the sound of that word. Try saying it slowly. When I do, my mouth moves through the syllables normally, until the “dip” part causes my lips to slap in a playful way. The mechanics of it make me pause and even smile. Yet, I can’t remember ever saying it aloud before; haven’t had an occasion to, in everyday conversation. When I looked up the definition I learned it’s an adjective, meaning: “something occurs, or is discovered by chance, in a happy or beneficial way.” I never expected an unplanned inconvenience, on a dreary, rain soaked day, could turn into a serendipitous occasion. This is what happened.
While driving south to the airport, so a sweet friend could catch a flight back home, I swung my sun visor to the side to shield against the glare. My sudden movement caused the garage door opener to fling off its perch. Now, my car is small and the opener is the only one I have, so I made a mental note to check for it when I exited the car to say my “good-byes.” Of course, caught up in a quick emotional farewell, I failed to look for the opener. Once in River City, busy with errands, I remembered to check under my seat and in the back of the car. To my dismay, no garage open could be found!
Storm clouds gathered as I decided to back track to the airport to see if the opener had landed on the pavement outside Departing Flights. Perhaps it was retrieved by a good Samaritan… but no such luck. The courteous gal at curbside check-in said no garage door opener had been turned in, and told me to talk to the security guard about locating the lost and found department. At that point, all I imagined was a fruitless search, brimming with frustration, and the sinking feeling I had lost our only garage door opener.
What was I to do? I envisioned myself paying for parking, and traipsing all over the airport in a probable vain attempt to right my world. So, I decided to pray about the situation, small as it was. Then I called my husband, and a dear prayer partner, asking for their petitions and support. Some of you might think I make mountains out of mole hills, or that I definitely have a screw loose; but when I remember to pray about small aggravations, I often encounter sweet blessings. Such was the case that day.
To my surprise, the security guard standing on the curb didn’t “shoo” me away, nor was he impatient with me. Instead of being gruff, demanding that I not doddle along the curb of Departing Flights, he calmly looked up the phone number for the Lost & Found. Truly a gentleman, he wished me well and allowed me to linger while I called in search of my lost garage door opener. The attendant manning the Lost & Found was equally polite as he took my information and didn’t downplay my situation. Stunned by the unexpected courtesy from both of these men, I was delighted to thank them and compliment them on their service.
Driving away into the storm, without my opener, my heart smiled. I was able to offer sincere appreciation to two customer service employees, who might not normally get affirmed in the course of a long day’s work. Indeed, I sensed God’s pleasure as I complimented them and spread a little of His love serendipitously!
Not only did my inconvenience bless others, but my Heavenly Father blessed me. That evening, my husband was able to locate our rascally garage door opener camouflaged in a cranny of the back seat! A truly serendipitous answer to prayer.
"Trust in the LORD with all your heart,
and lean not on your own understanding.
But in all your ways acknowledge HIM
and HE will make your paths straight."
Proverbs 3:5-6 KJV