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Help is on the Way

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“God is our refuge and strength, an ever-present help in trouble.
Therefore, we will not fear.”
–Psalm 46:1-2a

I rarely use the self checkout lines at the grocery store. I usually go through the check out that has a living, breathing clerk scanning the price codes on my groceries and weighing my produce. I always seem to get a bit anxious to do it myself, especially when I have several items that need to be weighed.

A couple of weeks ago at the grocery store, there was only one checker and the line was several people deep. So, I thought I’d give the self checkout a try and encouraged myself by thinking, how hard could this be? The first several items scanned well and I was feeling confident. But then I ran into trouble! I either wasn’t scanning the groceries fast enough or I had put too many items in the bagging area.

The pleasant computer voice on the register was giving me confusing messages. First, she told me to clear my items from the bagging area, then told me to return items to the bagging area. Then she was telling me to scan my next item before I was done clearing and returning items to the bagging area!

As I looked around for a store clerk, the pleasant computer voice was insistent in her commands. Others in the self checkout area looked my way with empathetic smiles and chuckles. Eventually, there was a pause in the pleasant computer voice giving me commands. Then with the same pleasant voice, the computer scanner started to repeat the words, “Help is on the way.”

Seemingly out of no where appeared a store clerk, who pressed some buttons on the scanner to silence the computer voice. The clerk assisted me in finishing scanning my groceries and gave me some helpful tips for the next time I use the self checkout (if there is a next time!).

All this was a good reminder that we may not always have a pleasant computer voice reminding us that ‘help is on the way,’ but we have the promises of Scripture to remind us that, “God is our refuge and strength, an ever-present help in trouble,” so we need not fear. May we hold to this promise as we seek the refuge and strength of God through prayer. Then in gratitude, may we be aware of those who come to offer help and guidance.