THE PERFECT MISTAKE
My Mother’s father worked as a carpenter. On this particular day, he was
building some crates for the clothes his church was sending to orphanages in
. On his way home, he reached into his shirt pocket to find his
glasses, but they were gone. When he mentally replayed his earlier actions,
he realized what had happened; the glasses had slipped out of his pocket
unnoticed and fallen into one of the crates, which he had nailed shut. His
brand new glasses were heading for China!
was at it’s height and Grandpa had six children. He had
spent $20 for those glasses that very morning. He was upset by the thought
of having to buy another pair. “It’s not fair,” he told God as he drove home
in frustration. “I’ve been very faithful in giving of my time and money to
your work, and now this.”
Months later, the director of the orphanage was on furlough in the United
States. He wanted to visit all the churches that supported him in China, so
he came to speak one Sunday at my grandfather’ s small church in Chicago. The
missionary began by thanking the people for their faithfulness in supporting
the orphanage. “But most of all,” he said, “I must thank you for the glasses
you sent last year. You see, the Communists had just swept through the
orphanage, destroying everything, including my glasses. I was desperate.
Even if I had the money, there was simply no way of replacing those glasses.
Along with not being able to see well, I experienced headaches every day, so
my coworkers and I were much in prayer about this. Then your crates arrived.
When my staff removed the covers, they found a pair of glasses lying on top.
The missionary paused long enough to let his words sink in. Then, still
gripped with the wonder of it all, he continued: “Folks, when I tried on the
glasses, it was as though they had been custom made just for me! I want to
thank you for being a part of that.”
The people listened, happy for the miraculous glasses. But the missionary
surely must have confused their church with another, they thought. There
were no glasses on their list of items to be sent overseas. But sitting
quietly in the back, with tears streaming down his face, an ordinary
carpenter realized the Master Carpenter had used him in an extraordinary
There are times we want to blame God instead of thanking him! Perhaps it is
something we ought to try more often, “Thank you God for not allowing my car
to start this morning.” He may have been saving your life from a car
accident. “Lord Jesus, thank you for letting me lose my glasses; I’m sure
they’ll be put to good use or there is a lesson to be learned.”
— Author Unknown