Patience at the Post Office

Post Office for Blog

Patience is one virtue which anybody who knows me will readily state I do not possess in abundance. And what little I have was very much tested one day at the post office. Only a single teller was on duty, so the line was longer than usual. And then who should step up to the counter but The Girl Who Could Not Make Up Her Mind.

She had a package to mail. Normally this is accomplished in a few minutes. However, the clerk had to give her all the options of how her parcel could be sent: Express, Priority, or First Class. This entailed describing the postage for each and how long the shipping time would be.

So far so good. But then the clerk asked, “Which do you want: Express, Priority, or First Class?”

“Uh . . . uh . . .”

“Express, Priority, or First Class?”

“Uh . . . uh . . .”

“Express, Priority, or First Class?”

“Uh . . . uh . . . how much does each one cost?”

The clerk repeated the information, then asked again, “Express, Priority, or First Class?”

“Uh . . . uh . . . and how long will it take to get there?

This information was also repeated. “Express, Priority, or First Class?”

“Uh . . . uh . . . uh . . .  uh . . . ”

“Express, Priority, or First Class?”

“Uh . . . uh . . . uh . . . Priority.”

The clerk did her business behind the counter and told the girl the amount due. By this time the line was snaking out the post office door.

The Girl Who Could Not Make Up Her Mind checked her purse. “Uh . . . uh . . . I don’t have that much cash.”

“We take credit and debit cards,” the clerk informed her.

“Oh, okay.” She searched within her wallet.

“Credit or debit?” the clerk asked.

“Uh . . . uh . . .”

“Credit or debit?”

“Uh . . . uh . . .”

“Credit or debit?”

“Uh . . . uh . . .”

Silently I was praying, Please dear God, if You have any compassion, don’t let it be a debit card!

“Uh . . . uh . . . uh . . . uh . . . debit.”

Darn it!

“Cash back?” the clerk asked.

“Uh . . . uh . . .”

“Cash back?”

“Uh . . . uh . . .”

“Cash back?”

“Uh . . . uh . . . uh . . . uh . . . yes.”


“Uh . . . uh . . .”

By this time I was close to screaming, “For heaven’s sake! There are other people in the world besides you, and their time is just as valuable to them as yours is to you! Will you make up your mind!!!”

Fortunately, I managed to control myself, barely. Eventually my torture ended. (By the way, if you skipped down to this part of the post because you didn’t have the patience to read the whole thing, imagine what it was like living it.)

But I made a huge mistake that day.

You know, it wasn’t like I was in a big fat hurry to get back to my housework. Here I had been afforded a break from my daily monotony. I could have taken the time for something useful, like prayer.

In fact, I probably could have done a decade of the rosary by the time The Girl Who Could Not Make Up Her Mind actually made up her mind. And I could have offered it up for the person who was irritating me.

That girl wasted my time, but so did I. And I wasted it in a far worse way than she did.

God grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change, and to use the times I must be patient wisely.


About ajavilanovels

I am the author of four Christian novels: Rain from Heaven, Amaranth, Nearer the Dawn and Cherish.
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