There’s a purpose in delays

Cartoon of traffic light showing red

This happened a couple of weeks ago; a car coming down the opposite lane at breakneck speed climbed up the divider and before my astonished eyes turned a couple of times before coming to a standstill upside down! Though the driver got out unhurt, it was just providence that there were no other cars in the same lane, or else it would have been a catastrophe!

Was it the red light at the signal that had stopped the other cars? How many cursed that red light, not knowing it had stopped them from sure disaster?

After the September 11 attack in the USA, the head of security told stories of why many people were alive… and all the stories were just about little annoyances.

One woman was late because her alarm clock didn’t go off in time. Another because of being stuck on the highway due to an auto accident. One of them missed his bus. One spilled food on her clothes and had to take time to change. One’s car wouldn’t start. One went back to answer the telephone. One had a child that was crying and she didn’t get ready as soon as she should have. One couldn’t get a taxi. Another man put on a new pair of shoes, developed a blister and stopped at a drugstore to buy a Band-Aid. That is why he is alive today.

Now when I am stuck in traffic, miss an elevator, turn back to answer a ringing telephone… all the little things that annoy me, I think to myself, this is exactly where God wants me to be at this very moment. I think of those who stopped at the red light that night looking ahead and saying, “Oh my God, that would have been my car that would have been struck!”

So the next time your morning seems to be going wrong; you are late in getting dressed; you miss the bus; don’t get mad or frustrated; God is at work watching over you. There is a purpose in those delays.

How would you ever know the accidents you have been kept away from because you were a few minutes late on the scene? How would you ever know that the slow bus to the station helped you avoid a harried, impatient passenger who could have pushed you down onto the tracks at the station?

But God knows, my friend, and as He continues to bless you with all those annoying little things may you remember their possible purpose.

Robert Clements

Robert Clements is a journalist and newspaper columnist. With an estimated 6 million readership, Bob’s Banter is published in over 30 newspapers and magazines in nearly every state in India, as well as in the top newspapers of Bangladesh, Dubai and Pakistan and is also translated into Hindi. He blogs at www.bobsbanter.com and can be reached at bobsbanter@gmail.com
Robert Clements

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Robert Clements

Robert Clements is a journalist and newspaper columnist. With an estimated 6 million readership, Bob’s Banter is published in over 30 newspapers and magazines in nearly every state in India, as well as in the top newspapers of Bangladesh, Dubai and Pakistan and is also translated into Hindi. He blogs at www.bobsbanter.com and can be reached at bobsbanter@gmail.com