The Alabaster Jar

Recently in my morning reading I arrived to Luke 7: 36-50. Before you read the rest of what I write, I would like you to read this passage (below). There is much speculation as to the identity of the woman. Some say it was Mary Magdalene, but any other time in Scripture where Mary Magdalene was involved, her name was given. It was speculated that it was Mary, the sister of Lazarus. Indeed, we do read in Matthew 26 of a woman anointing Jesus with costly oil while he was in Bethany and it is likely that it was Mary. But in this passage, the woman is not named, just her reputation was what defined her.

Here is a woman who has learned that Jesus would be at Simon’s house. I have to wonder, was she part of one of the crowds that listened to Jesus’ teaching? Did she stand at the back of the crowd, with her face mostly hidden, so that she could hear this man of whom she had heard so many tales? Did she know someone who had been healed by him or had she just heard the rumors and stories that were floating around? Whatever it was, it was obvious that Jesus’ words and actions had deeply touched her life.

The imagery of this woman standing behind the feet of Jesus while he is reclining at the table is powerful. She wets his feet with her copious tears and then wipes them with her hair. Not only does she wipe his feet with her hair, afterwards, she pours very expensive perfume on them. In many ways, the sheer magnitude of what she did is amazing.

For a woman who was a sinner, possibly a prostitute, to enter the home of a Pharisee and weep at the feet of Jesus had to be uncomfortable for all the guests at the table. She was probably discouraged from entering at the door, and entered anyway. She had to be conscious of the waves of disapproval sent her way, but that did not stop her from lavishing Jesus with her adoration. She humbled herself by her actions and in doing so she made sure that Jesus knew what an impact he had on her life.

There is no doubt that I deeply love my Savior. But I often wonder if that love would be strong enough for me to enter a home where I was not welcome, and humble myself to wash the feet of Jesus with my tears. Would I be willing to anoint his feet with a jar of perfume that probably cost more than a year’s wages? I would like to think that yes, I would be willing to show Christ my love in this way.

Every time I read this story, I am moved by the compassion and love that Jesus showed this woman. The fact that he acknowledged what she had done for him once again gives me a picture of the depth of his grace. And in more ways than I can even articulate, it challenges me to develop the depth of this kind of love for my Savior. I am so grateful that this was included in the gospels to give us even more insight into the Jesus who loves the sinner, no matter what their past may be.

Luke 7: 36-50, ESV

36 One of the Pharisees asked him to eat with him, and he went into the Pharisee’s house and reclined at table. 37 And behold, a woman of the city, who was a sinner, when she learned that he was reclining at table in the Pharisee’s house, brought an alabaster flask of ointment, 38 and standing behind him at his feet, weeping, she began to wet his feet with her tears and wiped them with the hair of her head and kissed his feet and anointed them with the ointment. 39 Now when the Pharisee who had invited him saw this, he said to himself, “If this man were a prophet, he would have known who and what sort of woman this is who is touching him, for she is a sinner.” 40 And Jesus answering said to him, “Simon, I have something to say to you.” And he answered, “Say it, Teacher.”

41 “A certain moneylender had two debtors. One owed five hundred denarii, and the other fifty. 42 When they could not pay, he cancelled the debt of both. Now which of them will love him more?” 43 Simon answered, “The one, I suppose, for whom he cancelled the larger debt.” And he said to him, “You have judged rightly.” 44 Then turning toward the woman he said to Simon, “Do you see this woman? I entered your house; you gave me no water for my feet, but she has wet my feet with her tears and wiped them with her hair. 45 You gave me no kiss, but from the time I came in she has not ceased to kiss my feet. 46 You did not anoint my head with oil, but she has anointed my feet with ointment. 47 Therefore I tell you, her sins, which are many, are forgiven—for she loved much. But he who is forgiven little, loves little.” 48 And he said to her, “Your sins are forgiven.” 49 Then those who were at table with him began to say among[a] themselves, “Who is this, who even forgives sins?” 50 And he said to the woman, “Your faith has saved you; go in peace.”

The Little Yellow House

One of my favorite aunts passed away yesterday (dare I say my favorite?). I only have two aunts left out of 14 originally. She was kind and compassionate, hospitable, and patient. She was generous with her love. And even though she had bright red hair, she did not have the temper that is such a stereotype for redheads! Although I do have to say I saw her aggravated occasionally, usually with my uncle. But it must not have been too bad because they were married over 65 years.

I have lots of fond memories of spending time at her little yellow house that was truly a home. I loved her green Fiesta Ware dishes that were square instead of round. I enjoyed eating her “cheesecake.” It was not until later that I learned it technically was pineapple fluff, not a true cheesecake. But it did have a graham cracker crust and cream cheese in it.

I was always excited to see her little yellow house at the corner of the Nortonville Gravel Road and her road. When I think back on how small that house was, I am somewhat amazed that a family of 5 could live there! And she hosted so many dinners there. I loved staying all night, even though it meant I had to kick my cousin Randy out of his tiny room for the night. There was no basement and I remember going to the root cellar to get canned goods for her and even one time going down there when there was a possible tornado. When my uncle finally built additional rooms on the house, it still remained yellow–such a happy color in my mind.

When I decided to move back home from Ohio, it was Aunt MaryAnn who came with my mom and helped load up all my belongings. I was probably more excited to see her than I was to see my mom. She has always just been there–loving and encouraging, gentle and kind.

She loved Christmas and one time when I took some friends from church home with me, we went to my aunt’s house just to see her collection of Santa Clauses. It was pretty amazing. She was so glad we were there. My friends commented on how gracious and welcoming she was.

Her life has never been easy and she lost a daughter many years ago and has one son who has made poor choices over and over again, which led to his life in prison. But she has one son who is a lot like her–compassionate, strong, kind and loving. She never complained of her lot in life and always still loved others. She cared for grandchildren and loved them unconditionally, she opened her home on more occasions than I can count and probably even know, and she endured difficult back pain that necessitated surgery. All without complaint–well at least to my knowledge.

And while the last few years have been spent with Alzheimer’s, she would still smile through her confusion when she had no clue who you were. It was hard to watch as her health went downhill with the advent of Alzheimer’s. I remember the last time I had a conversation with her at a family reunion. I reminded her gently who I was after I could see the look of confusion on her face. She asked me how Tom was doing. He was my husband, who had died a few years earlier.

Alzheimers is an ugly disease and it does not have mercy on anyone. As it did not on her. The things Alzheimer victims forget are a lifetime of memories and skills learned since childhood. The lack of recognition of the ones who love them most is debilitating for everyone. My cousin and his partner have been primary caretakers for both her and my uncle during the past several years–and believe me–that is a huge undertaking. It was not easy for him and my uncle to watch her slowly slip away to the disease until she was at a point where she could no longer be cared for at home.

Aunt MaryAnn, I am happy to think that you are smiling and chatting away in heaven with those who have gone before you. No more sickness, no more tears, no more sorrow. Enjoy your rest.

Dinosaur Days

Today it is once again gloomy, with weathermen predicting anything from sleet, to snow, to ice, and to rain. And really, who knows? But I know on days like this I sometimes just need a little laughter in my life.

A few months ago, my grandson left his toy dinosaur at my house. I guess I was just a little bored, because I tagged my son in a post on facebook.

“Will you please tell your son that I have been trying to take good care of T-Rex after he left him at my house. But today I found him in my refrigerator trying to eat all my pepperoni. It was a tough battle to get them back, but I got ‘er done!”

T-Rex was still at my house a week later, so this time the post read “Well, it would seem that I made it on Nana’s Naughty List. I was supposed to go home with my boy when he was here, but I have been having so much fun I wanted to stay here. So I hid and no one could find me. I got really hungry waiting to be found and FINALLY Nana found me today. When her back was turned, I headed straight for the refrigerator. I ate all her pepperoni before, but I found something even better this time. BACON. Unfortunately, she found me before I could eat more than one piece. But it sure was good and so worth it, even though I did get scolded. Guess now we wait for when my boy comes back.”

From T-Rex: “It is 2 more days until my boy picks me up from Nana’s house. This morning I saw Nana make some apple cider from this thing. I figured I would have some too. I waited and waited with my mouth wide open and nothing! I guess Nana is still put out that I ate her bacon. So much for getting a drop of apple cider!”

T-Rex got to go home the next time my grandson came over. But it sure was fun while he waited at my house. I can see why people enjoy Elf on the Shelf so much. I think that those posts got more likes than almost anything I have put on Facebook.

The thing is I think a lot of people forget to laugh. I just can imagine Jesus laughing and cooing at a baby brought for him to hold. He certainly loved the children who came to him. And I am sure some of them had grubby, dirty hands from playing before they came to be held by him.

Chuck Swindoll said, “Laughter is the most beautiful and beneficial therapy God ever granted humanity.” Used properly, laughter indeed helps us by providing added endorphins to our bodies. I have a friend who goes on vacation with me frequently. We have so much fun together and she makes me laugh so hard over the silliest things and I am sure my endorphins go up. I love that God put her in my life.

I encourage you to take time to find the joy in life and laugh a little—or a lot!

“A joyful heart is good medicine, but a crushed spirit dries up the bones.” Proverbs 17:22

“Then our mouth was filled with laughter, and our tongue with shouts of joy; then it was said among the nations, the Lord has done great things for them.” Psalm 126:2

My View from the Pew

Well, technically my view from the pew is really from the chair. We never had pews at my church. Believe me, chairs are far more comfortable and during the height of Covid-19 they were able to take out a lot of chairs in order to provide safe distancing. But I digress from the real point.

I am short and usually I sit toward the front of the church because I can see better. Invariably I will end up moving because someone tall sits in front of me. Last week, I came into the auditorium just before service started and had to sit toward the back. It was interesting how different the perspective was for me. But the cool thing was, I saw from the back what I normally did not see from the front.

I saw an arm with a tattoo sleeve lifted high in praise and a row back I saw a tiny older lady with her silver hair and dangling bracelets lifting her arms in praise also. I saw a man with black earrings in his gauge piercings, singing with all his heart. In the row in front of me sat a man dressed in a plaid flannel shirt who could have been an double for Paul Bunyan, beard, height and all. I saw black, white, and Indian cultures represented; and they were all brothers and sisters, worshiping the King of Kings.

Every Sunday you can count on two things being said from whomever is speaking. The first is, “Jesus is the lead story” and the second is, “This is a safe place for you to ask your questions.” The wonderful thing is, this is a body of believers who take that to heart. In an age when many churches are closing their doors, our church is reaching people with the powerful love of Jesus. We encourage everyone who comes through our doors to become involved in a ministry and be part of a home team, where they build relationships with other Christians.

As I observed from the back, I thought this is what the church should be–People from all walks of life who desperately need Jesus. We all have sin and we all have been recipients of Christ’s love when he ultimately shed his blood for us. From my seat in the back of the church I watched in awe as I saw God’s Spirit at work in a group of diverse people who crave a relationship with him.

We are not perfect, and anyone looking for flaws, can certainly find one. But the fact of the matter is when a church embraces their love for God and their love for people, God can work powerfully. What about you? What do you see when you watch from the back? What you see can tell you a lot about your church. I hope that it is God’s love shining through.

“Hearing that Jesus had silenced the Sadducees, the Pharisees got together. One of them, an expert in the law, tested him with this question: ‘Teacher, which is the greatest commandment in the Law’ Jesus replied, ‘Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all you mind’ This is the first and greatest commandment. And the second is like it: ‘Love our neighbor as yourself. All the Law and the prophets hang on these two commandments.'” – Matthew 22:34-40

My Valentine’s Day

Today is Valentine’s Day. A day that brings joy to some people, and stress to others. My cynical friends will say that it is just a day for merchants to sell more merchandise, and indeed I noticed the flower prices in my local grocery store went up substantially the week before Valentine’s Day hit. But my more romantic friends will anticipate receiving flowers, candy, or any number of things to celebrate their love.

The first year after my husband died, I found Valentine’s Day a difficult holiday to face. Now the thing is, it had never been a big deal day in our home. We didn’t do fancy dinners, or spend unnecessary money on a dozen roses. We were lucky if we gave each other cards some years. But we were together, and we loved each other. There was something about that security of knowing someone loves you and that you love someone that makes the day special. After he died, I found myself longing to be back where we were. But you cannot go back, you can only go forward.

For the single person who has never known the love of a spouse, for the widow or widower who has lost their loved one, or for the ones who find themselves in a difficult marriage and wondering if love will ever be theirs again, Valentine’s Day can be burdensome.

So you find ways to cope and find joy in the day. For me, it is taking joy in sending cards to my grandkids–although I must confess, somehow I missed doing that this year! The joy comes in watching other couples celebrate the day and being glad they are able to celebrate. The joy comes in not letting jealousy or envy get in the way of being happy for others who have found love and stayed the course in their relationships. Believe me, it took me a while to decide I would find the joy in the day instead of being envious of those who had their Valentine.

The joy also comes in knowing that I have the ultimate love, the best Valentine a person can ever receive, in the love of Jesus Christ. When God sent his son, it was like he was sending his Valentine to the world (I know that is not a theological concept, but I am just making a point here.). And for me, thinking about love, only leads me to think about Jesus. The lover of my soul. The rose of Sharon. The person who laid his life down for me. The one who was the Word when God created the very flowers we give as gifts. So Happy Valentine’s Day to all of you. May you celebrate knowing that no matter where you are, no matter how alone you feel, God’s Love is the ultimate Valentine’s Day gift.

Chariots of Fire

Do you ever have those days when you think, “I have no clue what God is doing.” I look at the world around me and sometimes I feel so defeated. I see so much hatred and strife, and so many spiritual battles of good vs. evil. I feel like I should be out there doing something and yet, I am not experiencing clear direction from God. Yes, I do have direction to love others, develop fruit of the Spirit and keep on having faith, but sometimes I feel that God has something in store for me that I just have not recognized yet! Have you ever been there? Have you ever questioned God and wonder why he hasn’t shown himself? The response I keep getting back is: Trust me, I have it covered.

Not long ago I was reading 2 Kings 6:6-23 and God reminded me that He’s got it covered. The Arameans were in a war against Israel, and God used the prophet Elisha to protect the king from harm. When the king of Aram discovered that Elisha was telling the King of Israel battle areas to avoid, he decided to take matters in his own hands and sent a strong showing of his troops to surround the city of Dothan, where Elisha was staying.  When Elisha’s servant went out and saw the troops, he came back to Elisha, saying, “Oh, my lord, what shall we do?” I imagine we are a lot like that servant sometimes. We wring our hands and cry out, “What shall we do?”

Elisha replied for the servant not to be afraid because, “Those who are with us are more than those who are with them.” The Lord then opened the servant’s eyes to see that the hills were full of horses and chariots of fire all around Elisha. God had not left them unprotected. The story ends peacefully as Elisha struck the soldiers blind and led them to the King of Israel. The king was gracious to them and spared their lives and the raids on Israel’s territory were subsequently stopped.

I take great comfort in the fact that we are surrounded by a mighty army of God. Metaphorically speaking, sometimes I am like Elisha’s servant and do not see God working and I feel paralyzed because I feel like the world is winning this battle of life. I just need God to open my eyes so that I can see it. But that is where faith comes in. I need to remember God is aware of my needs, and he is faithful. But sometimes like Elisha’s servant, I just want to be shown the army of God around me.

 What about you?  Do you feel sometimes like there is a skirmish raging around you and you are not sure of the outcome? Do you think you are alone in this battle of life and all is lost? Take comfort. God has not left us abandoned. We may not have the literal privilege of seeing the hills full of horses and chariots of fire, but we do have the assurance that God is at work on our behalf. Sometimes we just need to pray for God to open our eyes to let us see the chariots of fire, and then remember the battle belongs to the Lord.

Songwriters: Brian Johnson / Philip David Wickham

Battle Belongs lyrics © Bethel Music Publishing

Exposed to the Light

Our church is going through the New Testament together for the second time in as many years. I love the fact that so many of our family has been taking this to heart and participating in the challenge to read scripture daily. Each week our pastors read the same passages we read and share insights in ways I may not have seen before. It never ceases to amaze me when I read a scripture I have read multiple times before, God shows me something new. I do not know why I am surprised by that. He has been doing it ever since I became a Christian at the age of 12.

I was reading Matthew 10 recently and I cannot tell you how many times I have heard studies on Matthew 10:29-31. You know, the passage that says not one sparrow falls to the ground without God knowing, and the fact that God knows the very number of the hairs on our head. I have heard this passage used countless times to tell us that we do not need to worry because God knows our needs and is active in our lives.

But I rarely hear anyone do a study on the verses prior to this. Matthew 10:26-28 says, “There is nothing concealed that will not be disclosed, or hidden that will not be made known. What I tell you in the dark, speak in the daylight; what is whispered in your ear, proclaim from the roofs. Do not be afraid of those who kill the body, but cannot kill the soul. Rather, be afraid of the One who can destroy both soul and body in hell. ” (NIV)

The fact that Jesus came to earth to save mankind is not a secret to be kept, but something to be shouted from the rooftops. In this scripture he is letting the disciples know the things he is teaching them will be revealed in the light. Which is the good news of Jesus. But sin will also be revealed and brought to light despite the fact that so many people think their sins are secret and no one will find out.

Photo by Kristina Flour on Unsplash

It hurts my heart every time I hear another prominent Christian who has been caught in sexual sins. People like Ravi Zacharias, Josh Duggar, and more who have caused untold damage to the body of Christ by their actions. Not only did they somehow justify their sin, they deceived themselves into thinking that no one would find out. Their sins have been exposed for the world to see. How much more will God expose our sins on the day of judgment?

We as Christians should be holding out the truth of Jesus, who was sinless. He was tempted in the same ways we were. Satan dangled power, riches, and more in front of Jesus, and yet Jesus knew the will of his father and stayed true to the things of God. If Jesus came to our church and started listing our sins for the world to see, we would be horrified. Somehow we think that all those sins we do in secret will never be exposed.

But don’t be deceived. Jesus makes it plain that the one we should be afraid of is the one who can destroy both soul and body. How about you? Do you have hidden secret sin that may some day come to light? Do you bury your actions, thinking no one will know or see what you are doing? Bring them to the light and repent. Because only then will you find the freedom and joy that can be experienced in Christ.

Being Me and the Perfect Life*

Do you ever wish you had someone else’s perfect life? Have you ever thought your life would be better if you could just have their talents and skills, their perfect family, or their awesome job?  Sometimes it’s easy to envy others when we think they have the best personalities, the most talent, and other attributes we admire.  Frequently we get into the comparison game and come up the loser.

The fact of the matter is while we are busy envying someone else’s life, that very same person may be envying another person, too. When I was younger I could sense something wrong in a relationship with a close friend. I couldn’t put my finger on what was going on, but it seemed we were losing our closeness and I was stymied as to what I had done that would make her avoid me. Finally, unable to stand it any longer, I confronted her. I was stunned when I heard her say she was jealous of my ability to make friends easily and I had a boyfriend, while she struggled to build relationships. Feeling badly about her relationships, she had started to avoid me, especially when I was with my boyfriend.

But the REAL fact of the matter was that I envied her for her sense of humor, her close-knit Christian family, and her obvious musical talent. Once we were able to talk about our feelings and recognize that God made us unique individuals, with our own strengths and weaknesses, we abolished the barriers we had let build over time.

Being much older and somewhat wiser now, I have learned to recognize that God has made each of us unique and equipped us with different gifts. Our families, communities, belief systems, and temperaments have all factored into making us who we are.  When we learn to recognize our personalities, and learn to understand our strengths and weaknesses, we can come to a greater understanding of ourselves.

I am learning to be content with who God made me to be and to recognize I need to work within my strengths. I have also learned to acknowledge my weaknesses and not be afraid to ask for help from those who are strong where I am weak. I am finally allowing myself to be me, flaws and all! That doesn’t mean I am not continually trying to grow and thrive in my environment, but it does mean I have given myself permission to not be perfect. (Which is a good thing, because the Good Lord knows I have a long way to go!)

There is a reason God doesn’t want us to be envious of others. When we start comparing ourselves to others and becoming envious of who they are and how they live, we find seeds of discontent being sown.  Envy can lead to bitterness and selfishness. (James 3:13-18 deals with this very subject.) When we focus so much on others, we forget to focus on the One who created us.

Being me. I am the only one who can be me. Being you. You are the only one who can be you. God can use us both. For today I am content being me and realizing that while life isn’t perfect right now, someday when I am with my heavenly Father, it will be!

Have you learned to be content with who God made you to be? Have you learned to let God use you through both your strengths and your weaknesses? Or are you still wishing that you had someone else’s life?  I don’t know anyone who has a perfect life. But there is peace that comes from embracing who you are (imperfections and all) and giving that to God to use.

*originally posted on September 6, 2011 by Linda Wallace cwrn.org website (no longer published).

Snow Days

Today I am looking out my window and watching the snow steadily fall with a quiet whisper. As it accumulates and covers everything with a blanket of white, in my mind I am revisiting my childhood. Days like today have a sweet poignancy for me. They remind me of days that are past, but memories that are priceless.

I can envision the snow drifts piled along the fences and covering some of the roads. There was no snowplow with its big scoop to shovel the snow on our quarter mile lane. If it was a weekday, we put on our snow boots and walked to the main road and waited until the school bus came. But when we had snow on a weekend–then the fun began. We lived in the country and watching tv on snowy days was not an option.

After chores were completed, we would drag out the sled and pull it to the highest hill in our pasture. We would sled until our feet were numb and our faces were frozen and then trek home to gather in front of the pot-bellied stove and thaw, our feet tingling as the feeling came back. Oh yes, even in the 60s, we had no central heat and no running water. I would often envy my friends who had both.

As it would grow dark, we would listen to wind whistling through windows covered with ice, as we gathered in the one room that was warm enough for all of us. My dad would get out the games and we would play Monopoly, Parcheesi, or WahHoo (our name for Aggravation) on the board my cousin’s husband made for us.  As we started playing, my mom would be in the kitchen making home-made doughnuts and hot chocolate (nothing like the packets we use today!). As we would moan if we were put in jail, or accuse a sibling of cheating, we were building precious memories. We would laugh or pout, depending on whether we were winning or losing. Those times were also building a life-long love of games for me.

As we played, my mom would be in the kitchen making doughnuts and hot chocolate. It never occurred to any of us to help her; we were having too much fun playing games. She would bring the platter of doughnuts into the living room, and we would take a break long enough to retrieve our cups of hot chocolate and enjoy the melt-in-your mouth goodness of her doughnuts. We would spend the next two or three hours together, not realizing how many memories we were making.

Doughnuts made by my niece Stephanie. The tradition continues.

I wish I could say I was as diligent in making memories with my children on snow days. Instead, they would go sledding on McKelvey Hill with all their friends or watch a movie on television. If I could go back, I would do it differently. Unfortunately, there are no do-overs.

So, what about you? I encourage you to take the time to make some precious memories with your loved ones on days like today. Make a snow angel, bake cookies together, play a game, build a snowman, and yes, maybe even watch a favorite movie. Build memories that will last a lifetime so that someday you will look back with fondness, and maybe even a little nostalgia, to the memories you have created. Oh, and if you want–make doughnuts. Here is my mom’s recipe.

Mom’s Doughnut recipe – from memory written in her handwriting

Snow Apocalypse

Photo by Shawn Dearn on Unsplash

With the pending apocalyptic forecast of three days of snow here in our city, I do not know what I was thinking when I decided to go to the grocery store yesterday. All I needed was a container of cherry tomatoes for the recipe I was making for my neighbor, whose husband passed away. I had forgotten to add it to my grocery list for delivery yesterday. Go figure.

The first store I entered was crowded. The one thing I wanted was out of stock. So it was on to the next store—which was also crowded. Usually when I am in this store, I buy fresh flowers for my home. Not this week. Suddenly the same bouquet I bought last week was $15.00 higher. Oh yeah, it is Valentine season.

As I wended my way down the aisle to find the cherry tomatoes, I could find every other kind of tomato, but no cherry tomatoes. I did, however, find Roma tomatoes which would do in a pinch.

I added a couple of other things to my cart. (Who ever goes into the grocery store for one thing and comes out with JUST one thing? If you have the will power, kudos to you!) Then I headed for the check out lane. I always use the lane with a real, live person (I guess they are real, if they are live). No judgment on those of you who prefer the self-check. Well, today that line was 30 people deep. So I did decide to use the self-check lane. After a much briefer wait, I finally finagled my container of water so that I could scan it. Who puts the bar code on the bottom of a container of 24 waters? They seriously need to rethink that.

I complete my groceries and take the cart to the car. After I unload the groceries, I put the cart back in the cart corral which is at least 15 cars away. I get in my car and start to slowly back out of the parking spot, no mean feat. Of course, a big truck was on one side of me and a Chevy Suburban on the other. Now the thing is, I am short. I sit so short in the seat that when you are behind me, it looks like no one is driving the car. Who ever thought this parking lot would be practice for a demolition derby? Seriously it was. But after waiting for at least 10 cars, I was finally able to back out and head home.

All in all, I thought as I entered my garage, that could have been worse. I could be going tomorrow.