Juxtaposition (noun): two objects or situations that oppose one another
Last week, I had the pleasure of attending the Echo Conference in Dallas. It was all about taking our creativity and technical knowledge and using it to echo the Gospel.
I don't think I've ever been in a concentrated space with that many Macbooks, iPhones and iPads before. And although my Twitter account is two years old, I spent more time on Twitter reading the #echo10 hastags in one week than I've collectively spent on Twitter in those two years. I drank gallons of $3 coffee and fought off gadget-envy all week. In other words, I found myself briefly living in the glamorous world of high tech, Toms shoes, and all things Apple. (It was a great conference. I learned a lot and I'm still processing it all and how to use it in my job and at my church.)
Saturday, my dryer decided it had enough of this life and died an untimely death. (It was only 7 years old. This is where I want to rant about sucky products that don't last decades like they used to, but I'll spare you). My youngest had just gotten home from camp and I was staring down 9 loads of laundry...and no dryer. To say I was annoyed and whiny, is a mild understatement.
After church on Sunday, I skipped my Sabbath Nap (which my friends and family know, I take VERY SERIOUSLY), loaded up 9 loads of laundry into my car, and Peyton and I headed to the local laundromat.
All the way there, I was just dreading the experience. Laundromats are crowded and not always clean. I'm a mild germaphobe (okay, a major one. I'm like Monk. But worse) and using public washers and dryers was freaking me out. And this is what I'm most ashamed of...what if creepy people were there? I was not looking forward to spending time there.
As I pulled into the parking lot, one last thought popped into my head...what if Peyton feels embarassed about being here? Right about that time, God had enough of me. My heart was suddenly filled with the conviction of thinking I was too good to be at the laundromat. Ouch.
In less than 24 hours I went from dreams of an iPad or Macbook, to standing among 20 or so people who probably would be thrilled to just have a washer and dryer in their home. I was humbled. And embarrassed at my attitude. Here I was temporarily inconvenienced for one day, while most of the people around me did his weekly.
Shaken smooth out of my brattiness, I began engaging with people. So did Peyton. She saw a friend from school and they sat giggling over BBQ chips from the snack machine. One sweet lady helped me with the soap dispenser that I didn't understand. One man gave me advice on which dryer was better for towels and sheets. Another kind lady told me Monday afternoons were the best days to come since the crowds were low. They were their own little community, and they welcomed me in.
Strangely, I'm not in a huge hurry to buy a new dryer. I think God needed me to learn a little humility, so I am. Maybe next week, we'll get a dryer. But until then, I look forward to another Sunday afternoon at the Wash it Kwik.
PS--Happiest of happy birthdays to my great friend Kathy. When (if) I grow up, I wanna be just like you ;-)