Silent Afternoon


It wasn’t supposed to turn out this way; I was out for a day of Christmas shopping, people watching, mall walking, and fast-food munching. I was with my precious Lil Mo; no he’s not human, he’s my 1976 Postal Jeep. He’s much rustier now, it’s called a patina. We’ve kept him this way as it adds so much character. He had on his bright red shiny bow on the front for the season and we made quite a statement motoring around the city. That is until he refused to start right there in the PetsMart parking lot. I tried and tried. I smelled gas and decided to wait a bit, thinking I had flooded the engine. I tried again, still no go. I called my husband and he came within minutes to rescue me. He of course got him up and running. We decided it was fate that we were reunited, so my husband followed me to the Mall and we did our Christmas shopping, people watching, mall walking, and fast-food munching together. We had a good time and as we walked to the car I knew all would be well. I did need to stop by the grocery for items for Christmas Dinner, and my husband said he’d follow me until I got to the grocery. Well, he followed me right into the ditch; Lil Mo was rolling smoothly downhill, at the bottom as we started the ascent, I pressed down on the accelerator and it went to the floor … no go no mo !! I let it roll to the side of the small two lane road onto the shoulder and not too close to the ditch. Well … we got out, my husband bravely tried to start it again to no avail. We went across the street to the only building there. It had signs for valet parking so I thought it must be a fancy restaurant … wrong assumption there !!  We went inside what turned out to be a lounge under construction … complete with large male bouncer. They allowed us to come inside to make the call to AAA for a tow. I was on the phone quite a long time trying first to get through, then connecting and having to answer all kinds of questions. At the end of the phone call we were told a tow truck would be there within the hour. Soooooo … I promptly needed a bathroom. I meekly asked the bouncer if I might use the facilities. He pointed to the general direction. I found said bathroom to discover no light switch, thus no lights, in a pitch dark bathroom. I tried to find a stall and failed. Back out to the bouncer, he mumbled something about the breaker and pointed me in another direction. With more enthusiasm than I truly felt, I found yet another bathroom without lights. However, this time I found the stall in the pitch blackness and was able to do what I came to do. Meanwhile I am sure my husband wondered what had taken me so long. Reunited, we exited the building thankfully, and proceeded to our working vehicle to watch for the tow truck. Indeed it was an hour’s wait. While standing there the temperature started to drop as we stood turning our head from side to side watching both ways of the busy two-lane road for our tow. While waiting, I also watched many single engine planes land as we were right next to the landing area of the city airport. The planes came in quietly as their engines had been cut to aid in the landing process. Finally our silent wait was over, the tow truck was in sight. The young man’s truck was the kind to catch and grab the vehicle; it was quite an interesting process to watch. Lil Mo looked relieved as well to be rescued from certain harm as he had two wheels sticking out into the traffic lane. We bid Lil Mo adieu and watched him and the tow truck drive away. We were finally able to go home ourselves and call it a day. What a day … what an adventure … what an afternoon … what a silent afternoon!

Dear Lord, I’m sure there is a reason our plans were changed and adjusted today. I don’t know what that reason was, I only know that for at least an hour today my husband and I were still, quiet, watchful, and waiting for help from afar. Not unlike Mary and Joseph in the stable, there was not much they could do but wait in the only available place, an animal stall. Shelter was provided, help was sent, and all they could do was watch and wait. Later in her son’s life, all Mary could do was stand by and watch and wait sadly as her son’s life was taken, there was nothing left Jesus could give, and he was dragged away out of sight.

Thank You, Lord, for helping me see this lesson as the telling of it played out. I might have missed an opportunity to understand the Christmas story in a new and very personal way. You teach me where I am and in ways I can relate. You are a Good and Kind Father. You are my Teacher and Way-Shower. You are my Friend. Amen



Silent Night! Holy Night!

John Freeman Young  1859

Silent night! Holy night!
All is calm, all is bright,
Round yon Virgin Mother and Child!
Holy Infant, so tender and mild,
Sleep in heavenly peace!
Sleep in heavenly peace!


Silent night! Holy night!
Shepherds quake at the sight!
Glories stream from Heaven afar,
Heavenly Hosts sing Alleluia!
Christ, the Saviour, is born!
Christ, the Saviour, is born!


Silent night! Holy night!
Son of God, love’s pure light
Radiant beams from Thy Holy Face
With the dawn of redeeming grace,
Jesus, Lord, at Thy Birth!
Jesus, Lord, at Thy Birth!

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