Jeanne wanted to purchase a certain brand of shoes, and the nearest place that carried them was a store in the Spokane Mall.
So, a few weeks before Christmas, we set out on a journey to the east.
When we arrived at the store, Jeanne found the brand of shoes she wanted, but also wished to try on some others.
While she did so, I decided to take Benjamin and explore some of the other shops. Jeanne would text me after she made her purchase.
In one store something caught my eye — a purple and blue coffee mug that had quite a unique shape. (My wife’s favorite color is purple). It was called a hand-warming mug and I thought it would make the perfect Christmas gift for Jeanne. I considered it to be unique and quite a find. It even had the name of its creator on the bottom.
It turned out that Jeanne absolutely loved it and used it every day for her morning coffee.
In our household, my wife does most of the cooking and I usually take care of dish washing. I’m one of those people who will pre-rinse everything before placing them into the dishwasher. I also carefully hand wash certain more precious items, like our china, a vintage set of Pyrex Primary Color Bowls, and that purple hand-warming mug.
That is, until a few days ago. It slipped out of my soapy hands, fell into the sink, and shattered into pieces.
My initial reaction was shock and utter disbelief. What immediately followed was disappointment, which culminated in dread and fear. I wasn’t looking forward to telling Jeanne about this.
In a panic I looked for a replacement online. I reasoned that if I were fortunate enough I might be able to find something close. To my surprise I learned that the exact same mug was available. I also learned that it was dishwasher safe. So, I ordered, and then texted my wife with the bad and good news.
In my life, I have learned that my thoughts and inner struggles are not entirely one-of-a-kind. Others have had them, will have them; and I believe that our God, the maker of all, understands them all.
Walter is pastor of Immanuel Lutheran Church and has served as parish pastor for more than 25 years.