The Laptop Miracle

“A friend is someone who knows the song in your heart and can sing it back to you when you have forgotten the words.” ~C.S. Lewis

It was 8:00, the snow was flying, and I had to drive back to Greeley. I hadn’t done any of my homework yet. I still didn’t have my laptop working. I was nearly five days behind in all my classes. The immediate thought going through my mind was “Stop the world, I want to get off.”

As many of you know, back in September, I took a volunteer position with the Boy Scouts of Denver as the top youth volunteer. Having been in training through December, I was excited to get started. As I also began a new semester of college, I was ready to put myself to the test to see if I could juggle being a full time college student with this new management role.

I officially started on the job January 1st. Suddenly my inbox was flooded with emails, my cell phone was instantly maxed out of minutes, and everyone I knew seemed to have some sort of problem they expected me to fix. Not to mention, classes this semester brought a surprising increase in homework, compared to the fall.

But the most irritating and urgent item at the start of the new school year was when my laptop broke down. Being the first week of class, I tried to manage everything on my ipod, figuring I could catch up on a computer when I went home for meetings on the weekend. Homework, scout emails, meeting schedules, conference calls…there seemed to be an app for everything I needed. But soon the juggling act grew too great. Day and night, my inbox was hit with close to 300 emails. Homework was heavy as ever and I seemed to spend more time in the library that first week than I did all of last semester.

When the weekend came, nothing even slowed down.  The phone calls, the action items, the homework, the emails, the complaints, they all kept coming. Quickly I found that I was tired,  I was aching, I had a pounding feeling in the back of my head, and every time I checked my email, I felt like I was going to throw up.

As I sat in my last meeting for the weekend, I was at the end of my rope. It was 8:00, the snow was flying, and I had to drive back to Greeley. I hadn’t done any of my homework yet. I was nearly five days behind in all my classes. I still didn’t have my laptop working. The immediate thought going through my mind was “Stop the world, I want to get off.”

In that moment, I felt pretty sorry for myself. The worst part was that I had created the situation. I’d chosen harder classes. I’d asked for this job. I had thought I could handle it but it was eating me alive. Plus there was no way out. Even if I got on top of all I had to do, I couldn’t just will my laptop fixed. That took time, and if I took the time, I was going get even further behind.

Isn’t that the worst feeling of all? To be living a nightmare that you created for yourself. Rather it’s a situation at work, in school, in a relationship, etc. have you ever reached a point where you say to yourself, “I screwed up and I have no idea how to fix it”?

That is exactly what I said to my friend Bryan as we were wrapping up the meeting. Bryan, who also volunteers with me in the Boy Scouts, chuckled a little and looked at me very empathetically. He smiled and said, “Do you want to borrow my laptop for the week?”

“Are you serious?” I asked.

“Sure,” he said. “I can make something work for a few days if it will help you out.”

His words absolutely broke a frozen sea inside of me. I was stunned, shocked, and grateful. My own laptop tends to be my lifeline for all that I do. Not having it had magnified my burden. Yet here my friend was willing to take on that burden. He was willing to give up his lifeline for me to be successful.

Friends are a wonderful gift. In Ecclesiastes, the author talks about how friendship is one of the things that gives life meaning. He says, “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.” (Ecclesiastes 4: 9-10)

Not only did Bryan’s friendship help me up out of my own pity party, it got me thinking, “Isn’t this what so much of the bible is about?” Story after story tell us about people who think they have it figured out, who go about life thinking they know what will work, only to realize they’re so lost, they have no hope of helping themselves.  How many situations do we get ourselves into that we have no way to fix on our own?

Luckily, Jesus saves us every time. He is a tremendous friend to us. He is willing to take on our burdens. He was willing to give up His everything for us to be successful. So when we reach that moment of saying “I screwed up and I have no idea how to fix it” Jesus is there to say “I can make something work.”

May you be blessed by wonderful friends, this week (and always) and may you know that you have a friend in Jesus who is always ready to “make something work.”

Zach Herzog

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