“The difference between the almost right word and the right word is really a large matter. ’tis the difference between the lightning bug and the lightning.” Mark Twain

"Oh, Mercy!" - and Barn Door grand opening!

The Barn Door
Today's the day! The launch of The Barn Door, a new group blog which I'm a part of. It's full of writers, though it's not really a writing site. What it is is a blog that shows the world from Midwestern eyes.

Contributors range from Midwest natives living in tiny towns to suburbanites born in West Coast big cities (I'd be the latter (: ). It will also feature author spotlights and interviews, with book giveaways too. The first post is up as we speak - a bit of an introduction to the blog and its contributors. We'd love to have you stop by and check us out: the (Barn) Door is always open!

 Those of you who have been at FaithWriters for years, and who have been reading my challenge entries for just as long, may recognize this devo. I submitted it to the challenge during the "genre quarter," in the inspirational/devo category. That, by the way, was 3 1/2 years ago. With my puter issues recently, I remembered it, and felt led to share again.


"The computer's not recognizing it." I took a deep breath and looked down at the laptop in front of me on the kitchen table, fighting the urge to scream.

"Not recognizing what?" my husband asked from the living room, where he'd been reading a magazine.

"The flash drive." My voice began to rise and my speech quicken. "The computer's not recognizing the flash drive. I tried unplugging it and plugging it in again, but nothing."

My husband entered the kitchen and stood beside me. "Did you try a different USB port?"

I nodded, a lump forming in my throat. "That was the only place I had the file saved."

"That wasn't very smart." He looked down at me seriously. "You should always have a backup."

I nodded. "But I didn't. That's hours of work lost, and only a couple of days until my deadline. I was only an hour or two away from being finished, too!"


The information was, for all intents and purposes, unrecoverable. The flash drive was damaged; the only way to get my work off of the drive was to send it away for days or weeks and pay thousands of dollars for data recovery. It was time, and money, I didn't have.

I suppose I could have started over, but it likely would have driven me, along with my entire family, crazy. This had been an intense, extensive weeklong project, and even the thought of trying to redo it in two days was enough to make me want to cry.

And to make matters worse (in my mind anyway), it was completely my fault. I was the one who hadn't made the backup on my computer's hard drive. I was also the one who had carelessly placed the flash drive on top of my clipboard. When I picked the clipboard up, the flash drive fell onto the wood floor, undoubtedly causing the damage that lost all the data.

There was really only one thing I could do. I shot off an email to the project's coordinator, explaining the situation and asking what my next step should be.

I was quite thankful that my boss was the understanding, sweet Christian woman that she was - and that she wasn't counting on me alone to complete the project. Some other bosses I have had in the past likely would have jumped down my throat for my carelessness and required me to get it done, perfectly, on time, no matter the circumstances.

My project coordinator, on the other hand, extended both mercy and sympathy. She would allow the others to complete the job without me, and didn't begrudge me my errors. I was off the hook.

Our "Heavenly Boss" is like that too, isn't he? Often, he will give us a job to do, and we will mess it up - probably more often than we'd like to admit. We're often afraid to confess our errors or sins to the Lord, frightened, perhaps, of His reaction.

Yet, like my project coordinator, God is compassionate and merciful. He knows we are only human, and that "things happen." If we ask, He will forgive us, and often give us a chance to try again.

I will soon have another chance to work under this project coordinator. I have a feeling that, just like my Heavenly Boss, she will give me another opportunity to serve. That's what mercy is all about, isn't it?

If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just and will forgive us our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness. 1 John 1:9 NIV

Paving Rough Roads With God's Presence


  1. Oh yes, I am so thankful for mercy I'm shown every day! Computer problems keep us humble, huh? Ugh:(

  2. If I ever said, or even looked like I was saying to my wife, "that wasn't very smart." I'd be using my nose as a taillight.

    But yes, I thank God for his mery every day. If he can use King David, I guess I am in good company.

  3. God's mercy is so far beyond what I can imagine!! Loved this, thanks for sharing it! :)

  4. Great site. A lot of useful information here. I’m sending it to some friends!

  5. Great information! I’ve been looking for something like this for a while now. Thanks!


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