Surprise! Part One

Luke and I just got back from a vacation together. It was a combination of celebrations: our tenth anniversary, my birthday, and just being grateful that we have each other after some difficult months. He thought it would be great to surprise me with the destination, so for two months I was preparing (getting a tan, weaning A Flat) for this trip with few clues: we would need passport cards where we were going, and it may involve a boat.
We left Sunday morning for the airport, and upon arriving discovered that our flight had been canceled. I now learned that the trip did involve a boat, for the reroute they had set up for us didn’t have us arriving in Norfolk, VA, in time to make it. Luke had to figure out another way. It ended up involving one flight in first class to Atlanta, changing planes and heading to Richmond, then renting a car and driving from there. A couple of flags I now notice about Luke’s behavior during the exchange with the ticket counter ladies and during the subsequent flights- he was pretty calm about all this, for him, in the midst of these rearranged plans, and really excited about being ‘bumped’ to first class. I mean, we’re about to leave the country somewhere on a boat, it would seem to me first class is only icing on the cake. And he prefers middle pieces to corners anyhow.
So, instead of a leisurely trip to destination unknown, I spend the day with knots in my stomach about making the boat, because the new arrangements left little time for the unpredictable (lost luggage, traffic, etc.) There was a time we were hastily driving to Massachusetts to catch a ferry to Nantucket, and I felt the same way then as I did now. I kept thinking to myself, if we miss that boat, what will Luke do?! Will I have only pieces of a husband to bring home in my carry on after that?! It wouldn’t have disappointed me to miss the boat, not that I wasn’t looking forward to a cruise. But I was on this trip to be with Luke, and the destination really didn’t matter. But I still knew Luke, the administrator he was, might not survive a blow like this. So I prayed. That morning at the airport, while Luke lined up a rental car down the hall, I sat reading in Job about two kinds of wisdom. There is man’s wisdom, the stuff we can know and see from our perspective, and there is God’s wisdom, the way He knows and sees all and is the only One who can work all things together for our good. I kept reminding myself of this through the day, thinking how He in His divine wisdom will probably only answer my prayers one of two ways- either we miss the boat or we make the boat. And like Habakkuk, I prayed, then sat back in my uncomfortable upright position and waited to see how He would answer.
to be continued

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