Ignoring the Signs? Potential Embarrassment Ahead

You know the feeling you get when you walk into a restroom of the opposite sex? Well, perhaps if you weren’t walking and texting at the same time, you wouldn’t accidentally open the wrong door and walk in.

Yep. I did. Yesterday at the outlet mall.

Now, want to know what’s worse?

I thought I managed to do the same thing a second time later in the afternoon!!!! However, it turned out that someone had cleaned the restroom and left all the toilet seats up.

What about when you’re driving in a new town, put on your blinker, make the turn, and THEN see the sign that says exit only…in a drive-thru.

Did that yesterday, too.

Sometimes, we fail to read the signs in time and end up in a dangerous, or at very least embarrassing, situation.

I have prayed for years for God to give me a sign. What is the calling upon my life? I can recognize my abilities and strengths, but what is my calling?

I’ve cried out Him. God, I’m not so smart. Please send me a sign. A big one. A billboard, Lord. I need a billboard on the highway that says, “Carrie, you are to _________________.” I’ll get it then, Lord. I’ll get it, and I’ll go to work.

Yesterday I missed a Men’s Restroom sign and a EXIT ONLY sign. What makes me think I’d actually see and read a sign from God?

How many “signs” do we miss?

I’ll never forget a situation years ago when I had a rare opportunity to go grocery shopping without two very small children. It was an amazing event to get to go to Save-A-Lot alone. I only had to push one cart, didn’t have to worry about canned goods falling into a pumpkin seat on a baby’s head, could easily manage the list and steer, and no one cried, fussed, filled a diaper, or was just generally upset to be stuck in a cart at the store.

When you’re a stay at home mom with two under the age of two, yes, a trip to the grocery store alone is like a full day at the spa! I was relaxed and enjoying the experience…the freedom.

Until it came time to checkout. The woman in front of me had two carts. Each cart was full of groceries packed around a baby under the age of two. She was clearly wore out, stressed, and on her last nerve.

I knew how she felt. I looked at her and felt sorry for her…empathy, as I knew exactly how she felt at that moment in time.

Then I went right back to tallying my cost, double checking my list, and unloading my cart onto the conveyor belt. I took time to feel pride that my estimated cost of groceries was within .75 of the actual amount due. And I pushed my cart as far away from the mom as possible to bag my groceries.

We had a similar amount of groceries. She may have started first and had more motivation to get done quickly, but we finished bagging at about the same time. I glanced up and saw her contemplating the two carts. I knew she was trying to decide the safest way to get both carts down the incline outside the door to her car. And I heard a voice.

“Go help that woman with her kids and groceries. Invite her to church. Be My hands and feet today.”

Whoa! Powerful stuff in the grocery store. So, I hustled right over to help, right?

No.

I slowly pushed my cart behind her as we exited the store. She’s used to doing this alone. She has a system. It works for her. She’s got this and doesn’t need me!

As we went over the metal door plate, her first cart bounce and starting pulling down the incline too fast for her to keep up with the second cart. She managed to hold on to both carts, but the flats of canned vegetables on the first cart spilled onto the pavement and began rolling everywhere down the parking lot.

A young lady in the parking lot came running to gather up her cans. She laughed with the mom, loaded the cans back on to the cart, and pushed a cart to the mom’s car.

My heart sank. God gave me a “sign” and I ignored it. I rationalized it away. I didn’t meet a need. And He sent someone else to do it right in front of me.

I cried as I loaded my groceries into my car. A missed opportunity. A billboard opportunity.

While it isn’t really through “signs”, God speaks to His people continually.

Maybe I need to change my prayer to say Lord, help me to recognize the sign and not be able to ignore it’s message.