I would like to start off by saying that I am typically not a materialistic person. I know very little about designer footwear, purses and clothes. I don’t know the difference between a Porsche and a Pinto, nor do I care to know the difference and my favorite artwork are the things my kids made for me while they were growing up. I guess you could say that I am not impressed with “stuff”, which is what makes the following story so ironic.
A few weeks ago, my husband and I purchased a used vehicle. We spent the day looking all over town for something we thought would be reliable. It needed to be clean, run well and be big enough to haul things. We did not care what make or model it would be, nor did we need any luxury features.
When I first saw the SUV we decided to buy on the lot, I liked it but was afraid to ask about it because I thought it would be way out of our price range.
This vehicle had all the bells and whistles. An awesome stereo, heated leather seats with lumbar support, rear air and push button remote controls for windows, seats, radio, and mirrors plus a whole lot of buttons that do things I have yet to figure out. Yep. This big beautiful creature had it all and as it turns out was right in our budget.
So, it was a good day for us. The hunt for a car was finally over and as we drove off the lot in our “new” SUV we commented on how this was the nicest vehicle we have ever owned.
As the days went by, I found myself really enjoying our new purchase and paraded it around to all my friends. I showed off all the special features starting with the leather seats and ending with my favorite extras: the two moon roofs and the automatic sunroof.
I guess you could say I was impressed by the luxury of this automobile. Truth be told, I was almost prideful of it. All I knew is I liked it and was more than happy to show it off.
Loving this car also meant that I wanted to take care of it. So, last Friday, I found myself with two whole hours in the middle of the day with nothing to do. I decided to take my new toy to get an oil change.
Feeling accomplished after the oil change, and with another hour to waste, I drove over to one of those fancy automatic car washes. The kind of car wash that cost more than it should and bathes your car in multicolored foam soap and wax as you sit inside.
I splurged for the managers special and got the most deluxe wash they had, put my car in neutral, and let the conveyor belt take control of the car.
I sat there and watched as the multicolored foam and big sweeping brushes surrounded my car when, all of a sudden, I felt one single drop of water on my nose. As I looked up I was greeted with a proverbial water fall in my car.
As the water cascaded over my head and body, it also soaked the leather seats I coveted so much. I was trapped in my car on a conveyor belt with pink and blue foamy water soaking me to the bone. My only option was to sit there with closed eyes and wait it out.
So as I sat there with nothing to do but think, I had two thoughts. My first thought was how funny I must have looked. Multicolored foam atop my head and shoulders and dripping with water. It was too absurd to even get mad at and I actually sat there while the car advanced through the car wash and laughed out loud. My second thought was slightly more poignant as I was reminded of a Bible verse.
Proverbs 16:18- “Pride goes before destruction and a haughty spirit before a fall.”
The car that I was eager to parade around to my friends was now teaching me a couple of life lessons. First- The sunroof that I loved so much had a bad seal, reminding me all that glitters is not gold. Second- My prideful feelings about the car set me up for a fall and rained on my parade both literally and figuratively.
In the fifty years I have lived on this planet I have been taught many lessons, but, I have never had a lesson presented to me in such a refreshing way. Ok, I thought to myself. The water that poured over me was almost like a baptism, giving me a fresh start.
I spent the rest of the day cleaning up the car, ringing out my clothes, drying my hair, and laughing with my friends and family about the event. I am happy to report there was no permanent damage to me or the vehicle, but, I am hopeful the lesson will remain with me always. Life is Mysterious…