The father of an adult woman watched as his daughter drove away, and smiled. He was happy to see that the little girl he remembered was still there. Lately it had been difficult for him to see that little girl because she had been weighed down by the pressures of her job and her own high standards.
As she drove away, he watched her car turn the corner and noticed that the back wheel drifted when she made the turn. It was apparent to him that a tie-rod end was failing and he wondered if she would consider his advice that she have it checked. His daughter was very headstrong, and considered much of his advice unnecessary and annoying. He had tried to help her with various other mechanical problems which made her impatient and angry. He wondered if his help was even wanted.
He was concerned that the car might fail to turn effectively which could cause her to have an accident. He tried to let it go, but the visual image of his daughter being in a crash troubled him. He dialed her number and expressed his concerns about her car. After a short conversation he hung up feeling rejected. She didn’t want to spend the money for repairs at this time, but assured him that in a month or two she would have it checked. Although unhappy with her decision, he knew that the need to repair it was not urgent. The car was functional, and it was her decision.
After waking for the third night from a dream where he saw his daughter’s face unconscious against the steering wheel, he decided to take action. He planned his approach carefully, and for a moment felt like a spy or a detective in a movie; watching his daughter’s car for over an hour and hoping not to be recognized. It seemed a safe time, and so he made the call. Twenty minutes later the mechanic he had hired arrived and set to work removing the tire and diagnosing the problem.
The father paced around the parking lot, feeling the heat of the sun on his neck like never before. His watch showed the time was nearing her lunch hour and he worried that she might decide to leave her office, even though he knew she rarely did. He scanned the employees leaving the building but did not see her. One of her coworkers waved to him, and he smiled. He walked toward the building in an effort to reduce suspicion. After the coworker left he walked back toward the vehicle, hoping the job was done.
The mechanic met his eyes and nodded, the part was bad. He sighed in relief, now he could relax. The car was soon put back to working order and both men left. He made sure that there was no evidence left of the work done. The next evening he answered his daughter’s call and was surprised to hear anger. She had tire damage on the back tire, on the same side that the repairs were made the day before. When her coworker mentioned her father’s presence in the parking lot, she had assumed her father intentionally damaged the tire to have repairs made.
He denied doing any damage and tried to reason with her. He guessed that perhaps the tire was bad, or worn out because of the bad tie-rod end. He offered to help her pay for the tire since she was short on money; but denied he was to blame in any way. When she asked about his visit to her work, he made up an excuse but she didn’t believe him. He was surprised to realize that his daughter had hung up on him, hearing nothing but dead air. He tried to call back but she refused to answer his call.
At Easter the father decided he had enough, he would tell her everything. His daughter had been avoiding him and blamed him for something he was innocent of. He had hoped to keep his actions a secret, but was willing to do anything to restore her trust. He drove to her apartment and rang her doorbell with flowers in hand. Included with the flowers was a card explaining his actions along with the receipt from the mechanic. His daughter responded with “Go away” and he left, leaving the flowers by her door. A short time later his daughter called him because she finally understood.
—————Thoughts that motivated this story—————
In this story I wanted to reflect on being suspected of sabotage
17 Think not that I am come to destroy the law, or the prophets: I am not come to destroy, but to fulfil. - KJV
10 Think not that I came to destroy the law or the prophets: I came not to destroy, but to fulfil. – ASV
In Matthew 5:17 Jesus changes the focus from the listener to himself. He has defined those who are blessed and explained that we should rejoice and let our light shine to bring praise to the Lord. He defines what He is there to do in regards to the law and the prophets.
Jesus did things that were unusual, like associating with known sinners instead of those who appeared to be righteous. I think it was reasonable to wonder if Jesus would break from the covenant of the law made with the Israelites because it was impossible to keep. In addition to the Law, what would He do about all the prophecies and warnings that were not yet fulfilled? To boil it down, could the Jewish people trust Him?
Many times we accuse God of being unfair and suspect Him of cruelty. It is hard to believe that a perfect, always good Being would be kind to someone who chooses their way over the perfect, best way. I do it. I choose my way and I call that sin. I then assume that because I am broken, God must be untrustworthy like me. Deep inside though, I know there is something bigger than me that is dependable. I know this because of the cross. A cruel murder weapon – yet the cross is a message of love to anyone who knows they cannot keep the Law.