Dash of Sass: What an Usher CD Taught Me About God’s Perfect Timing (the Remix)
Quote of the Day:
“Almost every day I’m tempted take things into my own hands because I think God won’t handle them the way I want Him to or when I want him to. But today, I’m going to choose to trust God to give me what He wants, when He wants to.” ~Renee Swope
The Single Woman Says:
For almost a year, I had a CD stuck in my CD player in my car. And when I say “stuck,” I don’t mean it was just hanging out in the player and I still had the option to listen to radio. Nope. This CD lodged itself in my CD player in such a way that I could literally only listen to THAT ONE CD. The radio ceased to work. My player wouldn’t even let me fast forward or rewind or skip songs on the dang CD, either. My only option for listening to music while driving was to listen to the CD in its entirety, over and over and over again. It’s a mixed CD, with an eclectic collection of songs from Usher to Prince to Rascal Flatts all the way to Eric Carmen, so for awhile I rocked out to it with no complaints. However, after the 2,347th listen of “Nice & Slow (the Remix),” I was ready to ram my car into a tree just to make it stop. Nice & Fast.
I tried prying the CD out with pliers. Someone recommended tweezers, so I tried those. I tried beating the dashboard repeatedly with my fists (shockingly, this proved fruitless). I took my car in to a mechanic and asked him to help and he stared at my CD player and scratched his chin for several long moments before declaring he had no idea how to dislodge the CD. I tried willing the CD out with the power of positive thinking. I even tried praying it out (like God doesn’t have more important things to focus on). Nothing worked. I grew more and more frustrated with each passing day. I resorted to calling the CD names (not always polite ones). I huffed and puffed and pounded the steering wheel and jabbed away at every button on my console until I almost broke my fingers.
Then finally, about a month ago, I surrendered. I admitted defeat. I finally realized that my efforts were completely ineffectual and I had no power over my CD player and was obviously meant to listen to Nice & Slow (the remix) until I was Nice & Old.
I let go.
A few nights ago, I was starting up my car when I looked down and saw something that made my eyes grow wide. There, sticking out of my CD player, was the rogue CD. It had miraculously, magically, mysteriously self-ejected itself from the player! And I didn’t even see it happen. I couldn’t believe my eyes! I cheered and danced and turned up the radio to top volume (top 40 radio…what was that?!?) and shouted praises to Jesus like Ed McMahon had just showed up at my house with a $100 million check from Publisher’s Clearing House. After months of me pummeling my car’s console and jabbing at buttons and screaming and praying and consulting experts and finally, finally surrendering to my fate of only listening to one CD until the end of time, I let go…and in return, the CD nonchalantly and on its own let go of my CD player.
See the lesson here, friends?
Now, I don’t pretend to think that on the larger scale of things, my CD player malfunction was some big important issue in the heavens that God and the angels were wracking their brains trying to figure out. But I DO want to look at the bigger picture here (as I do with everything) and see what this little episode in impatience and frustration and ultimate surrender has to teach me about life.
I wanted the CD out of the player on MY timetable. I wanted it done now, now, now…and I worked my fingers to the bone (and risked getting them chopped off and/or mangled by sticking them into the tiny crevice of my car’s CD player trying to retrieve the CD) and I thought that I could, in my own finite and very human and fallible determination, find a way to make what I wanted to happen, happen, and NOW. I manipulated and forced and strived and even prayed and begged and used the power of positive thinking to get my way, and still…nothing. Then I surrendered and admitted that maybe, just maybe, I don’t know all there is to know about CD players and trapped CDs. And a month later, the CD popped out on its own…by no effort of mine.
Here’s the thing. When you let go, something magical happens. You give God room to work. When you finally admit that maybe you don’t know everything, you’re ready to LEARN. When you stop trying to MAKE things happen on your timetable, you invite God’s perfect timing to show up and work miracles. There’s something very powerful in that moment of surrender when you finally say “I don’t know what I’m doing. I don’t know how I got here. I don’t know how to fix it. I need help.” When you stop attempting to cover up your mess and invite God INTO your mess with you, He will show up and make beauty from ashes. He is the Master of taking a mess and turning it into a message. But you have to stop your own endless efforts and manipulations and attempts to control every situation. You even have to stop the endless begging and praying for God to bring about YOUR outcome and bargaining with Him to get Him to do things YOUR way and in YOUR timing. If some things you are endlessly asking God for came to you right at this moment, you wouldn’t be ready for them. You wouldn’t be able to handle them. You would actually drown in the very favor that you’re asking for. God knows when it’s time. TRUST Him. He knows what your arms are ready to carry. He knows what your heart and mind are able to handle. He knows what your life has room for. So get outta the way and let Him do His thing. It might take longer than you were anticipating, but better to take the long way than the wrong way. Learn to take life, as Usher reminded me on my rogue CD that played on repeat for close to a year, time and time and time again, “Nice & Slow.”
Because as Winnie the Pooh once said so succinctly: “Rivers know this: We shall get there someday.”