Laura’s Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day
Anxiety was mounting, and the desire to crawl in bed, pull the covers over my head and hide was growing stronger. Unfortunately, I was at work, and my bed and comforting blankets were several miles away. Instead, the printer droned on behind me while I printed out a report someone was “desperate” to have.
I tried to concentrate on the words coming out of the phone, a phone which I’d placed on mute so the other conference attenders wouldn’t be disturbed by my whining printer. Coherent minutes would be expected, and I tried hard to focus on what was being said, but someone else had popped into my office.
“Laura, could you make a note to remind me to do this in two weeks.”
I pulled a sticky note out of the dispenser and scribbled “Two weeks” on it and slapped it to the top of the stack of papers now occupying the diminishing real estate of my workspace.
On the way out, he stooped to pick up a sheet of paper that had been slid under the door – the deliverer had wisely avoided entering the pandemonium of my office. Red scribbling covered the page. “Looks like this is for you,” he said cheerfully.
As I stretched across the desk to grab the document, a voice coming from the black box on my desk said, “Could you read that back to us, Laura?”
By the end of the day, I had one set of jumbled minutes, couldn’t remember what a green post-it-note with the words “Two weeks” meant, and was in possession of a page of someone else’s undecipherable scrawling. I was a frazzled mess; and for someone who prides herself on being able to handle whatever is thrown her way, it was an uncomfortable feeling.
The drive home was made in complete silence – no Bluetooth in my ear, no radio talk show, not even soothing music invaded my space. Instead I let the peacefulness of a quiet car settle over me while I tried to figure out why my day had taken such an ugly turn.
I’ve experienced much worse and come out unscathed; so why then had the day turned out so unpleasant?
In the stillness of the car, a song popped into my head. I hadn’t sung the song in years until last Sunday.
Oh how praying rests the weary! Prayer will change the night to day.
So when life seems dark and dreary, don’t forget to pray.
I pray every morning before I even get out of bed, I answered the words of the song with defiance. But then I thought back to the morning. I’d been oh so tired when the alarm shattered my dreams. Everything had been done in a fog of exhaustion. Even driving to work had been on auto pilot. I honestly couldn’t remember asking God to help me with the day.
When your heart was filled with anger, did you think to pray?
Did you plead for grace, my brother
that you might forgive another who had crossed your way? (M. A. Kidder)
I had started the day exhausted and not once thought to ask God for help. The result had been not one but several angry moments. Disappointment in myself began to take over my heart and mind, and then I remembered something. Just because I’d had one terrible, horrible, no good, very bad day, didn’t mean I had to have another one.
The next morning when the shrill err, err, err of the alarm startled me awake, my left arm flew across the bed and smacked the clock into silence. Then I closed my eyes ever so briefly and said, Help me with this day God, because I can’t do it on my own. Then I rolled out of bed and had a much better day.
“The Lord is good, a stronghold in the day of trouble; and He knows those who trust in Him.” Nahum 1:7