I woke up this morning to welcome the home security guy. He was traveling from headquarters in Ohio to meet me, and I was told by a dispatcher that he could arrive anywhere from 8 a.m. to 12 p.m. I figured I better be out of my bathrobe and into real clothes by 8 just in case. Good thing I slipped my Pilates pants and stretch shirt on before I made coffee, and well before 8. He arrived early, just as I was loading last night’s dishes into the dishwasher, grabbing random shoes off the family room floor, and replacing a toilet paper roll in the back bathroom.
Our teeny, three-pound, sweet Yorkie pup did not detect the security man sauntering up the walk, nor ringing the doorbell nor walking past her in the kitchen. She was too busy whining for scrambled eggs that she somehow knew were in the frying pan, left over from my older daughters who had left for the local Catholic high school.
As the security man turned to speak to me, (and since I was not responding to the canine whines, I think), the dog suddenly started barking crazily. I excused myself and put her in her crate in the far end of the house. When she didn’t stop barking, I moved her upstairs.
I had hoped I might quickly show the security guy around the house, and then get to the business of educating my two youngest girls, ages 9 and 12, who are homeschooled. But showing the security technician around took longer than anticipated. One thing led to another and he shot a few questions my way: Why did he bring the wireless box and equipment when our home was hardwired? Didn’t they tell me I’d need different equipment if there was something already in place? Did I, after all, want to install the wireless kit he brought or go with the hardwired equipment, which would take a little more work to update, have a less fancy keypad and no two-way speaking system, but was overall a better idea in his opinion? Where should the glass break detectors go? How many did I say I wanted? Did I want to add this or that? That or this? A “thingamabob” or a “whatchamacallit”?
I better call my husband, I told him, who might have an opinion on the matter. Tick. Tock. Tick. Tock. Dog was alternating whining with barking now, from a distance.
My husband wasn’t at his desk at work to take my call. And he didn’t answer his cell phone either. I was going to have to decide these things alone.
Before settling on the security decisions, I tried to imagine all the possible break in scenarios: Bad guys bursting through the front door with machetes; burglars sneaking in from the back with revolvers, no … rifles, no … machine guns; someone climbing a ladder, swinging up the tree, jumping on the roof and jimmying open the window in the corner of the second floor. Okay, there were lots of possibilities. I was thinking I might say I’ll take 15 glass break detectors and 32 window-break detectors, when I realized that might sound a bit excessive. And really, how much would that cost? Eventually, I simply agreed to the security tech’s recommendations.
The girls came down for breakfast and were dismayed to see that their older sisters had taken the choice doughnuts for breakfast after eating their healthy fruit and eggs, and they wanted to know why their sisters hadn’t saved at least one of their favorite doughnuts for them. The chocolate covered donuts still left in the box looked pretty good to me. “I don’t know why they chose what they chose,” I whispered to them, “What’s wrong with these?”
The security man began explaining the intricacies of the system he was about to install, when suddenly one of the girls screeched. There was a young coyote in the yard. And, it was just about time, my youngest was surmising, for the dog to go out and do her business. At that moment I made an executive decision to put out newspapers for the dog in the garage.
The phone rang right at that moment, but when I answered I couldn’t tell who it was because there was a loud buzzing tone on the line. I made a mental note to call AT&T later that afternoon.
Life is so crazy sometimes. It’s full of ironies and monotonies and busyness. It is hectic and mundane and sometimes chaotic. And it is ours.
St. Teresa of Avila is said to have claimed that life is like a stay in an uncomfortable inn. And so, sometimes it is. But it is our life, the life God ordained for us to live, in its intricacies, little joys and challenges, as well as the big ones. We can work out our salvation in these small moments, more so I think than even in the larger ones. How do we do it? With steadfastness, patience, endurance, joy and humor, yes lots of humor.
The home security guy left my house today with me thinking about our ultimate home, our heavenly one. And a thought occurred to me: If we trust in God and move forward in faith, every moment can be a path to sanctity. We can have the ultimate home security by living each moment with acceptance and peace, and simply embrace it for the love of God.