“Yet I, like a trusting lamb led to slaughter, had not realized that they were hatching plots against me.”  - Jer. 11:19

I always pick the wrong line at Target.  I looked at the data and assessed my options: Lane 7 has a person with two shopping carts full of items and a bulging envelope of coupons. Lane 6 has one person holding a sweater. It is impossible for me to know that “sweater lady” has been seething for a week about being overcharged by $3 and needs to speak to a manager.

My kids throw up and soil every pillow, blanket, sheet, and stuffed toy on the bed just as the last load of laundry comes out of the dryer.

After much debate I take the side-streets over the freeway, only to discover the road is closed for the 10-foot tall Oscar statues to cross Hollywood Blvd at a roaring 0.5 MPH. 

In France, a popular April Fool’s prank involves pinning a paper fish to people’s backs and yelling “poisson d’Avril” when they discover it. A fish (real or fake) hanging off your back is a sign to everyone that you are a fool and have been tricked by the world.  These moments and countless others feel like a stinky fish following me around, reminding me of my shortcomings.

Perhaps the wrong line at Target, the traffic delays and the foiled plans to start my week “ahead of the game” are subtle reminders that ultimately God is the one in control no matter how much I try to control my environment.

If I am constantly focused on making the choice that avoids conflict, risk, or pain, then I am likely ignoring the deeper truth that whatever decision I make, God is already there with me.

When I feel cloaked in the stench of “Poisson d’Avril”, what reminds me of God’s steadfast friendship?

“A shield before me is God” – Ps. 7:1

Jen Coito

Photo Credit: Poisson d'Avril