She had misplaced her juicer. My mom just couldn't find this rather expensive piece of machinery anywhere. She looked high. She looked low. Nothing.
Maybe I had it? No I did not. Maybe someone borrowed it? No they did not. Maybe it was stored in the barn? No it was not.
It had just vanished. Poof. Just like that. One minute there. The next minute gone. No scientific explanation to it. Aliens had finally made contact, traveling billions of light years to suck up my mother's juicer in their space ship and hightail it home.
You know what it's like when you lose something. It eats at you. It disturbs your sleep. It feels as if something just slipped out of your control when you weren't looking. And you use all your God-given senses to ransack your life in a frantic search for what's missing.
I've lost things before - an earring, a CD case, several indistinguishable white socks, and one perfect man. (Note to self, buy more socks, forget about the man.)
Tonight, my mother and I visited. She's been upset about certain things going wrong in her life (She's got an unemployed loser for a daughter. Not me. The other one. Wait. I am the only daughter. Bummer.) and has been seriously questioning whether God is all that concerned about the details of life. Does He really care about what she cares about? That was her real question.
She had been up nights. Not eating. Stressed out. Beginning to feel numb. So many things weren't going well and then, of course, as if she needed any more to worry about, her daughter loses her job.
Was God up at night? Was He losing sleep? Could He eat while she found swallowing a chore?
Then the oddest thing happened, she decided to start searching for the juicer again. Yes, again. She had been given an excellent deal on several pounds of beets. And they just wouldn't keep. They HAD to be juiced.
Besides, she had only put in about five weeks of solid, sun-up-to-sundown effort into finding it. She needed to try again.
So tonight, resigned to another futile effort of searching, she walked to the storage area and began again. Check above, check below. It wasn't here. It wasn't there. She had looked all these places before anyway. She knew the answer. And as if crying out to her Father in one last exerted effort, she asked Him again, "God, if you care at all. I really need to find that juicer. Will you help me?"
She turned once again to her hunting and without breaking a sweat, there it was. The juicer. Just like that. The prayer, be it ever so humble, was answered.
"He was waiting until this time to answer that prayer. I wasn't finding it for a reason," she told me, a revelation in her voice.
"Uh huh," I said.
"He knew I needed something, anything, to tell me He was listening. That He cared," she said, realization dawning.
"Uh huh," I said.
"He...used...the...juicer," she said, pausing after every word.
"Pretty cool, isn't He? He's always got a plan," I replied.
"Uh huh," she said.
Things are going to be a little different in the Thompson home by morning. Mom will start the day after a good night's rest. Dad will start the day with a lifetime supply of beet juice.