The other day I was in the passenger seat of the Subaru, and Noah was driving. He was driving to his algebra tutoring session. He was not pleased (he almost never is these days, but particularly not when headed to an hour of math tutoring), and we were late, and he became very frustrated with some Sunday drivers in front of us. I corrected his driving and then shut my mouth (never an easy thing to do).
About a mile up the road I finally said, "Noah, it would be wonderful if every one in the world was on the same page at the same time. If when you were late and in a hurry, every one got out of the way, and even people stood at the side of the road and said 'Go, go, go!' But, that's not how God planned this life for us. If everything always went our way, we would never show our true colors, would we? God allows the trials because they show how we will perform when faced with difficult situations; who will curse the world, honk their horns, become frustrated with insignificant road blocks, and who will just take those same frustrations in stride, and be gentle with each other. Difficulties separate the sheep from the goats."
And I post this here so I will remember that when difficulties come my way. When the new compressor on the refrigerator dies before the repairman leaves the house, when Faith argues for the 1000th time in one day, when life just doesn't go "my way."
"When the Son of man comes in his glory, and all the angels with him, then he will sit on his glorious throne. Before him will be gathered all the nations, and he will separate them one from another as a shepherd separates the sheep from the goats, and he will place the sheep at his right hand, but the goats at the left." Matthew 25:31-33