What Would Have Happened If… By Lisa Burkhardt Worley

The plan looked good on paper.

I started my Doctor of Ministry bridgework yesterday with my first Hebrew class, but decided to squeeze in a last minute 24-hour trip over the weekend to Chattanooga, Tennessee to honor my dear friend and adopted mom, Joyce, on her 80th birthday. Joyce and i have been friends since the 80’s. I was going to make the journey by myself, but my husband, Jeff, asked, “Do you want me to go?” I responded, “Of course, I just didn’t think you’d want to, so I didn’t ask.” So with Jeff as my traveling companion, we flew into Atlanta, which is a quick flight to and from Dallas, then rented a car for the two-hour drive to Chattanooga.

It was a beautiful party and I was so glad we were there. It was great to see Joyce, her husband Charles and all of her beautiful family again.

After the celebration was over, we actually got on an earlier flight but couldn’t land in Dallas because of severe thunderstorms. We circled and circled and then the pilot said, “As you have probably noticed, we’ve been looping the airport, waiting for a signal that we can land, but the storms have high wind gusts, and we are running out of fuel, so we have been told to divert to Oklahoma City. We’ll give you further instructions once there.”

So instead of Dallas, we landed in Sooner country, and the flight was cancelled once the wheels touched the runway.

What would we do? We made the decision to rent a car (we got the last one available—a pickup truck) and after waiting 1.5 hours for our bags, we journeyed to the DFW airport where our car was parked, then home.

I am not a night person—usually winding down by 8:30 p.m., so for safety reasons, my husband drove the three hours back. We arrived home around 3:00 a.m. At some point, he asked, “What would have happened if I wasn’t here?” I realized I would have never driven back that late, and I would have had to find a hotel. I would have also missed my first class at school because the 9:00 a.m. flight we were rescheduled for the next morning was delayed for several hours. I was grateful for my husband, that he was there to help me and although tired, I was online for Hebrew.

Today, think about the special people who have helped you over the years—in situations where you could not have gotten through it by yourself. Ask the question, “What would have happened if…” Then tell them how much you love and appreciate them. Today, I am thankful for my husband Jeff.

“Two are better than one, because they have a good return for their labor: If either of them falls down, one can help the other up. But pity anyone who falls and has no one to help them up” (Ecclesiastes 4:9–10).

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