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We’d been planning the trip for months. The kids had been counting the days. We’d gotten up very early to drive during the cooler hours of the day and had arrived at our amusement park destination just after they opened. But before we headed in, I had to get everyone “sunscreened,” pack my backpack with enough snacks for an army, call the friend who was meeting us in the park, lace up some shoes and oh! don’t forget to roll up the windows!

An hour later, the kids were having a blast and the adults were getting in some good chat time. And then I opened my backpack to get a water bottle and suddenly had a terrible thought: where were my keys? I frantically searched and after dumping out the contents of the pack, became sure I’d left them in the van. I passed off the kid watching duties and quickly began the long walk back out to the van.

The whole way there I was running scenarios in my head. If the keys are locked in the car, I’ll have to call our insurance about having a locksmith come out and our day will be ruined. If I left the car unlocked with my computer, Brent’s tablet, and all our suitcases inside, well, then it could be that everything is gone and I’ll need to call our insurance company for an entirely different reason and our weekend will be ruined. Panic and yucky thoughts were swirling as I neared the car.

I first reached for the back door and it opened. Unlocked. Inside I could see all of our suitcases safely nestled. I then went around to the side door. I leaned in and the keys weren’t where I expected them to be. And then I heard it. Blowing air and the quiet sound of the radio. The car was on. Keys in the ignition. I’d left them there after rolling up the windows and had just gotten out of the car and walked away with the kids.


Amazingly, nothing seemed out of place and before long I had locked the car and headed back to my waiting family.

And the thoughts began: You are so stupid. How could you have done such a dumb thing? Who leaves a car running and walks away? Are you paying attention to anything? Man, you are loosing it. You can’t do anything right. You are raising your kids in total chaos.

I know those thoughts are lies. And I know who the Father of Lies is. And I know he is not the lover of my soul. He is not the one who adores me even when I leave a car running and unlocked in a busy parking lot.

Those thoughts still sting. But instead of allowing my shoulders to slump, it is my job as His daughter to take those thoughts captive and call them what they are – lies meant to ruin my day, my year and my life.

The truth is, I made a mistake. And I’m letting it go and moving on with the Light.

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By Joelle Yamada. Copyright © 2013 by GraceNotes. All rights reserved. Use of this material is subject to usage guidelines

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