Break A Leg

Who ever knew that one morning I’d break a leg, and wind up fixing so many broken things in my life?  See below for the rest of the story.

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The Little Things

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2016 © Anne Rose

The story I’m telling you probably won’t knock you off your feet. It’s more like getting your toes tickled by a gentle wave that’s washing upon the shore.

But this is my life, the little things. It’s where I see God peeking out from around the corner with a big smile on his face. And it’s where I finally get it and smile back.

So here’s my story. It all starts with a little orange rug. I knew I shouldn’t have tossed it into the washer with the rubber backing peeling off.  The first time I did that it clogged the drain—and cost me a whole lot of money.

But there’s more to it than that. My washer sometimes seems possessed. On any given day, it can be swishing and tossing and turning like any good washing machine. But then without warning, it stomps its feet and knocks loudly while doing an angry dance across the floor.  This behavior definitely gets my attention.

My biggest frustration, though, has been the two little buttons on the front. Sometimes they work. And sometimes they don’t. Unplugging is one tactic I’ve used to get the clothes clean before my husband has to wear his swim trunks as underwear. But this is not perfect. It requires near heroic effort, dragging a chair from the kitchen and draping myself over the top of this nearly refrigerator-size box just to yank the plug—wait—and plug it back in again—with absolutely no guarantee it will work on the first, second or third try.

But back to the orange rug. I went through the unplugging drill, knowing that a fourth try would result in more numbness in my sacroiliac joint. And then I watched my husband spend an hour trying to remove the front panel. And then I calculated how long I could keep him down there until the impossible happened—that he would actually get into the thing and fix it. And finally—finally there was only one answer.

It took the repairman two days to get there (hopefully, we had enough swim trunks) and it took what seemed like two minutes for him to tell us that there was nothing wrong with the machine.  After I paid him enough to take his entire family out to a really nice restaurant, I tried to convince myself that we had needed his professional diagnosis … Maybe I should have plugged it in one more time.

The next day my hand was still shaking from writing the check. But some things are worth it I told myself. Don’t be so cheap. At least now you can do your wash.

Except I couldn’t. The washer absolutely refused to work!!!

Now desperate to make sense of what didn’t make any, I remembered a few days before this fiasco when I got the pious, uplifting and satisfying thought that I should bless that button with holy water—which I did. And how wonderful—the very power of God had flowed through my little bitty finger as I touched it. Presto! We’ve got lights.

But that was then. And here I was again, standing on the shore of the Red Sea, waiting for another miracle, still feeling the sting of that repair guy. He took me. I wish I could make over a hundred bucks so easy. Boy, am I dumb was stuck in my throat like a chunk of dry chicken.

Another thought was stuck there too. Go ahead. Push it.

The idea plunked like a rock tossed into the river. Why would I want to do that? It wouldn’t do any good.

It must have been heaven knocking on my door. Do it.

My stomach turned. I was about to get the fool of the year award. Okay, I griped all the way to my toes. If I do this every ounce of self-respect will go with it.

Then this: The last time you unplugged it on your own, you let it sit for a minute. Leave it unplugged longer—just like you did for the repairman.

Really? I hadn’t thought of that. Enthusiasm for the button bump started to creep in through the back door.

I don’t know when I decided it was time. It was a while—not a whole day—but before my laundry had time to totally decompose on the mudroom floor. When I did it, I did it with aplomb—and holy water. My finger no sooner touched the panel and up she lit. And I’ve been washing clothes ever since. No swim trunks needed. Just regular clothes.

Sometimes God has me do some pretty crazy things before He gives me an answer. It’s not the way I want it most of the time. But in the end, it is.



Marvels of Faith … Surprise at the Bend in the Road

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Have you ever been so scared that you wanted to jump out of your skin? What did you do to feel safe again?

In the story I’m about to tell, you’ll hear what one woman did to cope with her worst nightmare.

Sally, forty-five years of age, was a kid again, coasting atop her blue bike as her short brown hair whisked away from her face. It wasn’t easy keeping pace with her husband, John, as he whirled across the hot, black asphalt past the familiar haunts he knew as a boy. They rode by the old Mitchell barn and then turned sharply onto Eagle Creek Road.  There they could see rolling hills topped with fresh, green fields of grass and golden seas of wheat. The road snaked so much that Sally felt as if she were a penny circling in a wishing well. The evening breeze cooled the skin on her arms, while her mind was happily at peace.

Suddenly, her mood snapped to the sound of a yapping dog. Uh, oh. John was already way ahead, so that left her to face the vicious looking, gray mongrel standing his ground about fifty feet away. Luckily, he didn’t move past a certain spot in the grass. “Ah,” she thought,” an invisible fence. “Thank God for that!” She gulped a breath of air and bore down until she reached the next straightaway.

John yelled back, “Hold on, we’re going down a big hill.” Immediately, he curled his broad shoulders over the handle bars to increase his speed.

Sally, instead, squeezed her brakes, which had the effect of jerking her forward. Now, her jaw clamped down hard as she held her breath. The winding road below looked like a gray ribbon as she speedily rolled past a white clapboard house. Then, her mind began to race: “What if I crash into a mailbox? What if a car pulls out from a driveway and I can’t stop?” Suddenly, she was frozen. “God, I’m scared!” she mumbled under her breath, “protect me. Put angels around me.” Her grip on the handlebars tightened even more as she inwardly fought to let go of her fear.

By now, John had disappeared. He probably had free-rolled the entire length of the hill. She knew he’d laugh and say, “Oh, little Miss Prissy. She’s afraid to go fast.”

He’d be right. Sally hit the brakes like a nervous twitch down the sharply curved hill all the way past the hidden driveway sign. The same defenseless feeling came back until she could see the road bottoming out. Then, she let the bike go and smiled when she saw John waiting at the stop sign.

“Come on, slow poke,” he said, his bright red shirt thoroughly soaked. “Now, we have to ride back up the hill. We’ll take a longer, but less steep road.”


Sally didn’t mind the grueling trip back, even when her legs cramped and she had to get off the bike and push it. She was feeling more carefree, even though her lungs ached by the time she reached the top of the hill. “The car’s just one bend away, keep going,” she told herself as she focused on the tiny moon craters in the asphalt.

But she wasn’t home-free yet. Out of nowhere she heard a growl. Then she saw it, a Dantean nightmare, its fierce eyes almost as scary as its snarling, bared fangs. A sickening, powerless feeling grew with each slow loop of the pedals. A pit bull was heading her way! John had slowed, but the dog wasn’t interested in his tall, powerful body. There was only one thing on the menu, and she seemed to be it—a human-sized dog biscuit.

What she saw next was definitely not what she expected! Out of nowhere, a shepherd-collie mix dashed out, grabbed the pit bull by the neck and threw it onto its back. Then, the fair-haired dog staked its large paw on the pit bull’s belly and held it down until she passed by.

The wheels on the bike continued to roll, even though Sally had stopped pedaling. The memory of what had just happened whirled about in her brain. Did she just see that? Finally, after a few feint breaths, a smile creased her lips.

God had just sent her a four-legged angel with blond hair!