Favor. It’s something we all want in day to day life. We ask for favor(s) when we need something or when something we want isn’t in our reach without help from someone else. But what I’m learning in my life is that favor…God’s favor…is all around me all the time. I just have to be looking for it to find it.
It’s in the little things, the seemingly coincidental. It’s in big things that can’t be explained in any other way BUT God’s favor. But if I’m not looking, His favor can be easy to miss or take for granted as happenstance.
God’s favor was on full display for us as we returned home from our Spring Break trip. Let me start by telling you that AIRPORTS STRESS THE EVER LOVING LIFE out of me. I’ve learned some tricks over the years to help reduce my stress, but most of my time at airports is all about fake it until I make it so that I don’t lose my mind.
This particular trip was one that I thought I was prepared for. I had done my research. I knew we were flying out of the second busiest airport in the US. I knew that the rental car return lot was a 10 minute shuttle ride from the airport. I knew that we were traveling on one of the busiest days of the week. We planned well…or so we thought.
We arrived at the car rental return 3 hours before our flight was scheduled to leave. Car drop off went great. We got our luggage and headed to the shuttle pick up area. When we arrived, we were the only ones there waiting for a ride to Terminal 4. Within minutes, the area was packed. As the shuttle arrived and began unloading its passengers coming in to start their vacations, impatient passengers began trying to board the shuttle. The driver quickly reminded them to wait until the shuttle was completely empty. For some reason we were the only people boarding at the front of the shuttle. The front emptied faster than the back and we were allowed to board first. We got seats as chaos ensued around us as others tried to find space for their luggage, their bodies… The first sign of God’s favor. If we had been just minutes later, we probably would’ve just waited for another shuttle to avoid the chaos.
We arrive to the terminal and head to check-in. When I tell you the line for check-in was at least 50 yards long, wrapping multiple times, I’m not exaggerating. I may be underestimating how long the line was. As we made our way to the very back of the line, I could feel my stress level rising. We got here 3 hours early. And that may not have been early enough!
I did everything I could to stay positive. We wound our way through the line for 15 or 20 minutes, making it maybe a quarter of the way to the counter, knowing we still had to get through airport security. After about 20 minutes a lady who I now call my Southwest Airlines angel came up and asked if we were traveling as a family. We told her yes and she pulled us out of line. Not really sure what was happening, we followed her just a bit. Because we had a kiddo with us, she took us to international check-in…where there were only 2 families in front of us. God’s favor on display again.
We get checked in in a matter of minutes and head to airport security. I remember telling Chad that I was so thankful for God’s favor at check-in because I just knew the TSA line would be long if check-in was that long. We arrive at the TSA checkpoint, and sure enough there’s a line. As we walk towards the line, again we’re asked if we’re traveling as a family. With our “yes”, we’re placed in a separate, MUCH shorter line for families going through security. Again, in just a matter of minutes (15 minutes, maybe…but in TSA time, that’s nothing), we’re through. God’s favor. Again.
As we sat down to actually enjoy eating breakfast in the airport instead of grabbing and running for the gate (like I thought we’d have to once I saw the line to check-in), we sat and talked about God’s favor. It was on full display that morning. Things that could be so easily overlooked as God working, but that we chose to see.
Isn’t that how life goes? Sometimes we just have to choose to see God’s favor. It’s all around. You woke up today. Your day may be tough, but you’re getting through it. Maybe you were part of a pay it forward and had a cup of coffee paid for. Maybe you hit all the lights green when you thought you’d be late. Maybe you experienced a miracle.
You’ll always find what you’re looking for. If you’re looking for all that can go wrong in your day? Guess what. That’s what you’ll find. If you’re looking for the things you’re missing, those are the things you’ll find.
But what if maybe, just maybe, you started looking for God’s favor in your day? For all of the ways God works things together for your good? You’ll find it. In small and big ways. In the mundane and the profound. It’s there. All around you. God’s great big, unmerited favor, waiting to be found.