For our light and momentary troubles are achieving for us an eternal glory that far outweighs them all. -- 2 Corinthians 4:17
We’ve all had them. I wish mine didn’t happen in front of so many people. It was my debut in the choir, my first time in this church’s choir loft. Waiting for the perfect opportunity to make an unnoticed exit after singing, I was anxious to get to my Sunday school class. Observing one classmate slip out, I realized that it was time to go. I stood and hastily stepped down to the empty row of seats to make my quick get-away, but it wasn’t meant to be. Losing my balance, I tripped over a chair and went crashing face first to the floor. It wasn’t pretty. Parishioners, who were fortunate to miss the spectacle, heard the ado. Startled singers from the front row turned and unsuccessfully tried to pull me to my feet while some concerned tenors, leaning over the chairs, questioned my well-being. I couldn’t get my bearings. Becoming intensely self-conscious, I realized the service stopped because of all the commotion. Slowly pushing myself off the floor and unsteadily rising to my feet, I was unable to put any pressure on my injured leg. My embarrassment intensified when my husband appeared and helped me limp across the row and out the side door.
Oh, how I wish I could do that over. In class, my leg pain and swelling increased but didn’t affect me as much as my embarrassment. The tears started to flow. Other concerned choir members entered the classroom and upon seeing me, couldn’t resist chuckling over my humiliating episode. I previously had nightmares about losing my sheet music or singing at the wrong time, but it never occurred to me that I would cause such a disturbance that the church service would be disrupted.
I wonder if Jesus ever got embarrassed. I somehow doubt if He did anything in haste that He regretted. But didn’t Jesus experience every human emotion? Why does our compassionate God allow mortifying situations to happen? Perhaps I could blame sin for accidents happening or for my imperfection and tendency to be impatient. Was there any particular reason why God permitted that humbling event? Was I more concerned with the details associated with singing than focusing on worshiping God? Perhaps someone had a wrong perception of me that needed to be corrected. Or maybe I thought too highly of myself and needed to be knocked down.
Sometimes we may never know the reason. Job never learned why he had to suffer. It helps to be reminded that God is in control and allows negative things to occur for a reason. Eventually I may find out, but for now, I must redirect my thoughts from humiliation to trusting God who sees the big picture. He has a purpose and plan for every person, and in some way, this incident has its place. So I trust that this humbling experience will someday benefit myself or someone else. Today, “embarrassed to tears” became a reality for me.