A Tantrum Averted

A Tantrum Averted

Normally, shopping invigorates me.

Not this day. Not when I started from a point of exhaustion.

With looming deadlines and a conference to prepare for, this might be my only opportunity to purchase needed items.

Hubs graciously went with me. Disinterested in women’s clothes, he wandered. Only, I’d forgotten my phone. After making a couple of purchases, shoes and a sweater, and a mile later, I found him sitting patiently outside the store.

Hubs volunteered to go back home and get my phone so we wouldn’t waste any more time looking for each other. I continued shopping and happily found a different pair of shoes, just as comfortable for half the price I’d paid in the previous store. Though my legs were ready to buckle, I traipsed back to the first store and was grateful for how sweetly and efficiently the clerk gave me a refund.

Hubs needed shoes as well, so I sent him into the shoe store while I went to a department store to look for slacks. Something told me, I was too tired to go on, but I feared this might be my only chance before the conference. After an assortment of dressing rooms and lugging packages around, I bought two slacks. The cashier was new. Remembering the kindness of the other clerks, I tried to be patient as we worked through rejected coupons and foibles of the over-taxed senior mind.

I reunited with Hubs at a bench outside the store.

I plopped down.  “Let’s go home.”

He agreed.

I was so glad to be home. I’d pulled out as much nice and patience as I could muster. I plopped my purchases on the bed, unloaded the bags, and quickly panicked. No shoes! No. Can’t be happening. I’m too tired for this!

Hubs brought me back to the mall. We retraced every step taken, left a card with every clerk and cash register where I’d been, and provided contact info at the mall lost and found.

I’d like to say I immediately put the experience into a right perspective. My brain had already been fried from the first trip to the mall. First I was angry at my own stupidity, and then I silently fumed to think someone took advantage of someone else’s lost merchandise.

The Spirit has a way of checking our bad attitudes.

When I stopped at the shoe store, the clerk remembered me and expressed her displeasure that my lovely shoes may have been usurped. After a Holy Spirit rebuke, I now felt calm. “It’s okay. What doesn’t kill me, eventually goes into a book.”

Remembering Romans 8:28, I said, “The Lord’s got this, and He’ll provide. My loss may be someone else’s necessity met. He is the God of our oops and makes our crooked paths straight.”

Over the next few days, we saved much more than the cost of the lost shoes in unexpected ways. I’m sure, He won’t leave me shoeless either. I’ll find another pair somewhere.

The incident reminded me that we never know how God will require us to respond even when frustrated by our mental weariness. Perhaps he is giving us an opportunity to see His goodness and sovereignty over our failure. He requires us to be His peace in all situations. I’m glad he refocused my thoughts before I hurled toxic words at innocent folks.

He is our peace when we have none.


“And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.”

Philippians 4:7




About Linda Wood Rondeau

Award-winning author Linda Wood Rondeau writes blended contemporary fiction that demonstrates, once surrendered to God, our worst past often becomes our best future. Retired from her long career in human services, she enjoys being able to play golf year around. Readers may visit her website and blog, called Snark and Sensibility.


  1. Thanks so much for your Spirit-inspired words, Linda. I have to check my attitude a dozen times a day! I’m in the season of little children bouncing around the house, dropping entire gallons of milk onto the floor in glorious explosions, and changing plans on a dime when little ones wake up with stomach bugs. It’s an important reminder to stay in step with the Spirit!

  2. Dedicated to those like me who become so mad at themselves they spew poison at others. Thank you, Holy Spirit, for reminders to be at peace in all situations.

  3. I was getting tense just reading about your day. My purely human self is right there with you on the poison-spewing! Thank Y
    ou, Lord, that You transform us. All the poison drains out of us and does no harm.

  4. I am not a fan of shopping, so I felt your pain reading this. I’m glad the Lord helped you turn a difficult situation into an opportunity to share His love with someone else.

  5. I’m not a fan of shopping either! I enjoyed your post and the lesson in your story, Linda. I’m also curious as to which conference you were preparing for since I have spent the last four days at one. I’m assuming you are referring to a writers conference but maybe not!

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