Seat Upgrades, Grace & Peace
My wife, and my oldest son and I are currently traveling to England to drop him off at Oxford University for his senior semester abroad. I have been so excited about this opportunity for him that I haven’t actually thought about the fact that I will be leaving my kid in a foreign country for three months.
This bit of information kind of hit me today, and I couldn't help but feel a little anxious. And when I get anxious about one thing, it generally bleeds into other things.
When we checked in at the ticket counter for our flight to Toronto, the agent informed us that our seat assignment would be given to us at the gate. I complained that I had already chosen my seats for the flight some months ago.
The agent looked at me placidly and said, “You’ll have to wait until you get to the gate to get your seat assignment.” And then she added, “There’s no guarantee that you’ll be sitting together.”
I fretted over this—more than I should have. When we got to the gate I stood in line waiting to see if we would indeed get a seat assignment. At some level, i actually thought to myself, “There might be a real possibility that there won’t be a seat for us on this plane, and if there isn’t—what will we do then?”
Finally, after a long wait, the ticket agent handed me our new boarding passes. “You’ve received a complimentary upgrade to business class,” she informed me with a smile. I must have looked like an idiot standing there with my mouth open because her smile turned into a grin.
I am currently cruising at 30-plus thousand feet in the air with ample legroom, free drinks, free snacks and the promise of an actual dish of some kind of pasta on the way. And it occurs to me in this moment that I didn’t deserve any of this. We just got a complimentary upgrade because some ticket agent decided to do something nice for us.
In a weird way, I took this as a message of sorts. It’s like God was reminding me, “I’ve got this. You worry too much. Everything is going to be fine. Your kid was my kid way before he was your kid.”
Jesus told his disciples, “And which of you by being anxious could add a few inches to the measure of your life? And why are you concerned about what you are going to wear, all of the earthly worries that you have? Look at the flowers in the field—they don’t have a care in the world, but not even Solomon in all of his glory was as beautiful as they are.” (Matthew 6:27-29)
May you find the peace of Christ today and every day—even in the middle of worry. May your anxious moments be turned into beautiful reminders of the mercy and goodness of God toward you. And may the grace and peace of our Lord Jesus Christ be with you now and always. Amen.