Seven Shiny Wheelchairs

Sharon JaynesA Sudden Glory, Gratitude, Living Fully, Perspective 43 Comments

The fog was thick. I was late. My husband was tense.

It was a Friday morning, and my husband, Steve, was driving me to the airport for a speaking engagement in Kentucky. We were one of a parade of cars inching our way down the highway, feeling our way through the curtain of grey. With squinted eyes, white knuckles, and steady determination, Steve kept his eyes trained on the taillights in front of him.

“Lord, please delay my flight so I can make it,” I prayed.

At 8:59, I bolted from the car to attempt to make my 9:00 flight. At the security checkpoint, I stripped off my boots, jacket, earrings, necklace and watch, pushed my carry on through the x-ray monster’s mouth, and walked through the metal arches.

“Ma’am, we’re going to have to check inside your carry on,” the security guard sang.  “There’s something in there we can’t identify.”

“No, please don’t,” I pled.  “I’m about to miss my flight. They’ve already boarded.”

“No, please don’t,” isn’t something that goes over too well with security guards.

“Sorry,” she said, as she slowly and methodically picked through my personals. Inside she discovered twenty-five silver scripture bracelets that read, “I can do all things through Christ who gives me strength.” I almost laughed.

I jogged to the gate only to discover that God had answered my prayers! The flight was delayed due to the fog!  Hallelujah! God is good!

I dared not tell the disgruntled passengers that the flight delay was my fault – because God had answered my prayer.

When we finally arrive in Atlanta, 2 ½ hours behind schedule, I discovered that my connecting flight to Kentucky had been cancelled. I was put on standby with forty other unhappy people. I was number thirty-two on the list and the plane was booked solid.  I called the conference coordinator and gave her the news. Prognosis – not good. My attitude – even worse.

Now, I have left out lots of frustrating minute details, but let’s just say I was not happy.  No one was cooperating: the weather, the airlines, or the One who controls it all. At least that’s how I felt. Pull up a chair beside me and watch what God did to adjust my attitude and put the day’s frustrations in perspective.

I’m sitting at a jam-packed gate filled with angry disgruntled passengers. B12. I look like them, feel like them, act like them. You with me? Not a happy camper. Not a good representative. Not saying, “God is good,” to anyone. Then someone walks up and has the nerve to interrupt my pity-party.

“Excuse me,” the airport employee shouted.  “Let’s clear the aisle, people. This plane is preparing to disembark. Clear the way. Make room.”

She walked over to the boarding door and positioned a red wheelchair by the entrance.  Then she was joined by another, then another, then another. I had a front row seat and facing me – staring me in the face – were seven attendees standing behind seven shiny red wheelchairs – waiting for passengers disembarking the plane.

Then God began to speak to my heart. I suspect He had been trying to get my attention all day long, but I was too wrapped up in my own pouty self-centered attitude to listen.

Sharon, which side of this aisle would you rather be on. The standby side or the side waiting for those who can’t stand at all.

Suddenly, my little trials and tribulations of the day seemed very small. So what if my flight was canceled. I could walk. I was not bound to a wheelchair but bound to God who is in charge of the moments of my days.

I stopped whining and began thanking God – for eyes that see, ears that hear, fingers that feel, hands that help, lips that speak. I realized that I needed to focus less on the air traffic controllers and more on the One who controls the air. A little fog never stopped Him from accomplishing all that He has purposed and if He wanted me to sit in that airport, I could trust that He had a great plan.

I didn’t make the flight, but all forty of us on standby did get out of Atlanta that night. A family of five made it to the wedding of a beloved son, a soldier in uniform returned to the arms of his waiting mom, and I made it to the conference with thirty minutes to spare.

God had it under control all along. He just needed to lift the fog in my own heart before I could see His blessings clearly.

How about you? Are you frustrated with a certain situation in your life? Have you been just a little bit grumpy about it? Here’s an idea. Let’s turn our pity party into a praise God party and spend some time thanking Him for His many blessings.

Father, forgive me for complaining when the events of my day don’t go the way I had planned. I trust You to guide my moments and my days. In Jesus’ Name, Amen.

Leave a comment and share something that you are thankful for today.

A Sudden Glory Sharon Jaynes

Want to learn more about how to experience God’s presence in your busy day…even when that day doesn’t go as you had planned. Check out Sharon’s beloved book, A Sudden Glory: God’s Lavish Response to Your Ache for Something More.








© 2023 by Sharon Jaynes. All rights reserved.

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Comments 43

  1. After a Stage IV cancer diagnosis in July 2022, my health rapidly declined. I went from being able to do everything independently & being able to take care of my family to being unable to even roll over in my hospital bed without assistance. I kept thinking about the verse in the Bible where Jesus tells a paralyzed man to pick up his mat & walk and I desperately wanted instant healing too. God had other plans. My life intersected with people I would have never met if regaining my strength didn’t take time. I still have Stage IV cancer, but celebrate that I can again walk, cook, drive my son to soccer practice, and share the story of God’s goodness and the power of prayer.

    1. In 2017 I lost my daddy. Very suddenly & most certainly very unexpected. In 2018 my mama was diagnosed with Stage 2B pancreatic cancer.
      I know that’s so strange to find it that early. Even the dr commented that. She lived with us most of the time between 2017 (after my daddy’s home-going) & 2020 (her own home-going). During those years with us I can’t count how many times she would tell me, “Penny, for this I have Jesus” or “Oh how I love my Jesus”. On her worst days of treatment and/or pain, she never once said she didn’t understand this. She would only praise the Lord for his strength, love, mercy, & grace. She left this world with dignity & grace. To this day those two phrases stick in my mind & heart & I can’t thank the Lord enough for allowing me to watch this lady face each day with a praise on her lips & in her heart. She went to Jesus in my home with me, her one & only daughter (our little inside joke), at her bedside. Just one more thing I am so incredibly thankful for.
      Thank you for sharing your story.

    2. Hi,

      I’m sorry about your cancer. I am glad that you can walk and drive your son to practice. We take the little things for granted, like being able to walk, or turn over in bed. Thank you for sharing your story. I pray that our Great Physician will heal your body.

      I suffer from terrible headaches. Some days it’s all I can do to get out of bed. Through it all, I have learned to have more compassion for people who are suffering. Whenever I’m in the hospital or at the doctors office, I look for opportunities to be Jesus to the people around me. I always chat with the nurses.

      Once, I led someone to Christ when I was in the hospital. I’d just had three blood clots in my lungs. I was in excruciating pain, and on a morphine pump. My roommate was going through withdrawal. She kept taking showers to distract herself from the pain. I asked her if I could pray for her. We started talking and she accepted Christ as her Savior! Then she was able to rest and so was I.

      Peace be with you!

  2. Thank you for this message this morning. I need in my life right now. Patience and God’s will for me to see all that is good and not let extended family issues make me have a pity party. I am very blessed and could see myself in this situation. Every single time I try to control things my way, the stress is unimaginable. I have no control over other people, their life, or their situations. I just need to be quiet, listen and let God handle the issue with my siblings. I cannot change their life if they don’t want to change.

    1. Sandy, I’m learning to let go of people and situations I can’t control as well. It’s a process. Lisa Teukerst wrote in one of her books “Don’t sacrifice your peace on the altar of their chaos”.

  3. Thankful for The ASSURANCE in Knowing That God is In Control and He’s Working it Out; And He Has NOT Forgot About Me nor My Children!

  4. This speaks to me in such a profound way! I am going to spare the details, but a car accident 2 1/2 years ago changed my life forever! After a failed surgery and misdiagnosis, the only thing I knew was I wanted out. I wanted to be out of pain. Out of the misery that plagued me. I had to be reminded that I was NOT alone and that only God could show me the way. I had to remind myself of all the things I could still do instead of the things I couldn’t do. With a little help from a dear friend, I was thrust back into hope and healing. Although most days are tough, I have days where I am reminded that “YES” I am still here! I am still loved. I am still worthy and so is he, the most high!

  5. I have been on a number of situations similar to that when everything seems to be against me and what I think I am trying to do for God. It’s always a learning curve after the event but how I wish I could believe at the time that everything works together for the good for those whose trust is in God. Thankyou Sharon today I am so grateful for my husband who has put up with me and loved me for our 58 years of marriage.

  6. I’m greatful and thankful for God’s abundance of mercies grace and blessings that we receive on.a daily basis. Even during trials, test and everything that’s going on in this world.

  7. I needed this message today. I have been struggling with waiting, but God is always on time and if I need to sit in the waiting room a lil longer, I trust it’s for a perfect reason.

  8. I am thankful for the hope that spring is just around the corner, even though yesterday was the first day of spring. I have encountered way too many depressing, rainy, cold and windy days lately, and it does NOTHING for my outlook, mood, and attitude. Thank you for this devotion! God Bless!

  9. I’m thankful that I have a job to go to. Often I complain about having to get up so early each day, commute to work, am tired and grumpy at the end of the day. Still have to clean, cook, etc. In reality, I am blessed to have a job with health insurance and good benefits. I have a reliable car, money for gas. A home that has housed my family for 15 years. I have an abundance of food to cook for the little blessings that we adopted who for the past 6 years have called me mommy. I needed this change of perspective.
    Thank you, Lord for ALL of the blessings that you give! Please help me recall this when I’m in the thick of it and ready to complain. I’m so very thankful for Your faithfulness and grace <3

  10. Oh my! How I needed this reminder today. I had a critical health crisis several months ago – and the healing and regaining strength has been a slow process. And I am so tired of Dr appointments, This morning on my way to work the radio played the song “I Am Blessed” by Cain and it started to nudge me out of my pity party, Then I read this – a reminder a few months ago I couldn’t walk. I think the Holy Spirit is yelling at me to look at the positives – yes, there are Dr visits – but all the staff and Drs I have seen have been kind, good at listening, patient in answering my questions. And there is medication to help me – even if I don’t want to take it. So, today, I will focus on the good. And on the One who made me. The One who gave me life again. The One who is healing me. The One who sees me. The One who listens to me. And the One who used a message from Sharon Jaynes to help me through another day,

  11. Really needed to heat this one today. That’s all I need to say besides “Thank You Lord for reminding me what’s important!” AMEN!

  12. Thank you for sharing this experience with us! The Lord brought to my mind many of the blessings He has bestowed upon me even in the midst of a depressing political and world environment that has put a dark and anti-social cloud around our community that was once so vibrant with smiles. I am thankful for a wonderful husband of 38 years and how much closer to God he is desiring to walk. I am thankful for my health even though I don’t feel as young or as invigorated about life. I am thankful for God’s goodness. He is merciful and faithful even when I don’t understand the circumstances I face or those I love are facing! Thank you Lord that the sadness we feel about this world can point our eyes upward towards You and when I do look to You alone, I experience your faithfulness, peace, acceptance and your love that cast out fear! Jesus is the Light of the world and on Him, we can depend. Blessings to you!

  13. Thank you Sharon for sharing this message today! Perfect timing! Life can be so difficult at times…. we need these reminders to leave our pity party’s and jump into God’s arms! I really needed this today! God is so amazing with how He always seems to put the right messages in front of us, we just need to be always looking for them.

  14. Thank you Sharon for all your uplifting messages and prayers! And to all you dear sisters in Christ!
    We serve an awesome God and I am so thankful that He died for me on that old rugged cross, even though I am so unworthy. He is always with us, and will never leave us nor forsake us!
    God Bless you all!

  15. One and a half years ago I was in two car accidents, not my fault, cars were totaled. I still am waiting for compensation on the first car accident, but still am without a car. The Lord’s messages was to wait patiently for him, Psalm 27:14. i’ve been without a car for six months, but God has provided good friends to help me out.
    I am waiting and trusting, and obeying God, for I know that his ways are not my ways and his thoughts are higher than my thoughts, and he has something better waiting for me. I feel he has been through these two accidents with me and is working in my life and teaching me patience, much patience, which I never have had. I know he has big plans for me even though I am 82 and live alone; thankfulness praises , obedience, and trust are very important.

  16. I am so thankful that I woke up this morning and got out of bed. That I had a bed to sleep in is a blessing, I have food, shelter a wonderful husband and I am able to come to God and thank him for all my many blessings, thank you so much for your positive story and for sharing this. I hope you and your family have a blessed day.

  17. Hurricane Ian destroyed about 80% of our home last fall. We were blessed to have been able to find an apartment to live it but time has been moving so slowly while waiting for repairs. Soon it will be six months but God has always given us what we need. Now our house will be ready mid April except for master bath and laundry room because we have to wait for cabinets to be made. Again God has provided temporary ones that can be used. I needed this today to remind me that although God hasn’t answered in the timing I wanted, He never failed to supply our needs while we wait. Thank you Sharon for sharing.

  18. I’m grateful my daughter is alive and living with us. Her mental health issues almost took her life. There are hard days as her bipolar and PTSD, along with some chronic physical health issues make life challenging, but we’re so grateful she’s still here. God has helped us find a rhythm and he sustains us with laughter and love.

  19. I’m thankful for my salvation through Jesus! I’m so blessed to have a Christian husband who prays for me and loves me! I’m very thankful for how far God has brought me spiritually! I’m thankful that God is still working on me, even when I mess up!

  20. My husband was one of those in a shiny wheelchair. He battled Parkinson’s for 20 years and finally won. His last words were, “I want to go home’ as he lay in the living room on a hospital bed. I knew he was talking about seeing Jesus. That was in January. Now that I can zip thru the airport once again I will miss the opportunity to push that shiny wheelchair. He never was complaining – and I mean that. He saw Parkinson’s as an opportunity to reach many people he would never have met. Thank you for your post. It was healing.

  21. Thank you and thanks to all who commented. I read every one. I have been in a state of grief and depression since losing 2 sons and my mother, all 3 very close together. I think this grief played a very big part in my recent (8 days ago) diagnosis of Myasthenia Gravis. I wish I had been more thankful for my health, and I wish I had not let grief consume me and cause me to fail to see other’s needs. Sometimes, it does feel like too much. But, God has been faithful to ease things down when I start feeling overwhelmed. And I praise and give Him all the thanks and glory.

  22. Needed to hear this TODAY! Closing on some property and nothing has seemed to go right – delays, paperwork, more paperwork. But I GET to close on some property. I GET to sign my name with a hand that works. Thanks Sharon!

  23. Today I am thankful that I have been able to bless the tradesman who came to prepare a room for an ensuite installation – I have given him some nice furniture that is excess to our needs, after he mentioned he lost everything in a divorce. Having been through the same thing years ago it’s great to bless someone this way. I really loved today’s devotion and want to remember it & have it permeate my soul. Thank you!

  24. Sharon thank you for another amazing word that I needed to hear. Sometimes we get so caught up in our present situation we lose perspective of the whole picture.
    I love your book “When you don’t like your story” and remembering how God has a purpose for what we are going through and we how we will come out better on the other side as he uses us for his glory.
    I will continue to keep praising and giving thanks to our amazing Heavenly father!!

  25. Thank you thank you ! This was so needed and the all the replies touched my heart. Thanks to all who shared ❤️

  26. Thank you thank you ! This was so needed and the all the replies touched my heart. Thanks to all who shared ❤️

  27. My husband fell off a ladder and broke both his wrist. He had to go to rehab. While being wheel to the dining room he was having a pity party. He was having a hard time having to have someone feed him. While he was being feed he looked up and saw a woman being wheeled in with two broken arms and a broken leg. At that moment he felt grateful. It could have been worse for him. Also compassion for this woman. But God. He knows just what we need when we need it.

  28. After these inspiring comments, I’m almost embarrassed to add mine. I lost my beloved husband 1 1/2 years ago. I’ve spent many lonely, disparing days. But blessings upon blessings have been heaped on me. Support from countless friends and my wonderful family, A sweet little daschund, Strudel, who God led me to, the strength to carry on alone – this is the first time I’ve lived alone in 71 years. Yesterday, I had the strength to dig up a very large bush in my garden that had died. I love to garden but I’ve had some issues with my back and wasn’t sure I could handle digging and planting. But God saw my heart and has given me the strength to not only go on without Joe, but to do so with joy in the midst of my sadness. And to find that, in spite of my still debilitating grief at times, I have so much joy in my life. And living alone now (with sweet Strudel) has become a blessing. I’m less distracted now and am finding that prayer and praise come more easily for me in solitude.

  29. Thank you for this reminder to be thankful for all things. I remember reading instead of saying I have to do laundry, I have to get groceries say I am able to do laundry and I am able to get groceries. It puts our daily chores into a Godly perspective.

  30. I have been having a whining, pity, woe is me party for far too long lately. Life has been difficult to say the least the last four months. I have moments of praise but needed this reminder of how truly blessed I am even in the midst of the horrific storm I feel I am in. I can appear and sound ok but inside I feel like I am drowning….God is still God. He is walking me thru. Help me Jesus to keep my eyes on You & praise You thru the storm.

  31. I praise God that He has patience with me! I’m learning to be thankful and enjoy the time with my beloved husband, truly a miracle gift from God, instead of crying and whining about his ALS diagnosis. Some days are harder than others, but God is good, faithful and enough. I’m still learning, though.

  32. This story couldn’t have come at a more perfect time. Last May I was in a car accident with a severe concussion. I was out of work for two and a half months, I couldn’t comprehend what I read, I couldn’t do things that required more than one step at a time (like cooking), I had family take me to appointments and help me fill out paperwork. I improved over time but it’s now March 2023 and I’m still not 100%. I’m working on Praising the Lord when I can. For a long time I struggled with “Why Me”. Last month I was in the Er for a Sudden Gallbladder Emergency that they were going to do surgery on but because it was so inflamed and infected they couldn’t until it calmed down (My surgeon said it would be too dangerous). I’ve been living in discomfort and some pain until they can do the surgery (next month hopefully) So after I read this story I realized “No More Pity Party” I will lift up my hands and Praise the Lord. The Lord is Good!

  33. Deborah Barefoot
    March 24, 2023 7:30 pm

    The most wonderful day of my life….. At age 70, my first grandchild had been born!!! Thanking God and preparing to pack and travel nine and a half hours to hold this blessing, I had one task to finish. Suddenly, I was t-boned by a car bigger than mine. Everything changed. I was cut out of my car, rushed to a hospital trauma unit, admitted with injuries that would take a long time to heal. It would be an even longer time before I could see my precious grandson. But…..God is still good, I am still here, and, yes being a Grandmother is all that I have been told. I understand the rides in wheelchairs at airports. I have been a passenger who has had to ride one quite a few times over the past nine months. Thank you for sharing your beautiful story so we all can share ours.

  34. This sure spoke to me today, like you I was having a pity party yesterday, it was my weekend off and I was about to go see a friend that I only see on occasion. Seeing this friend could have led to something that was against Gods will. God sent a few interventions while I was on my way…my grandson had been bit by a tick that tested positive for Lyme, I had to pick up meds that had to be kept cold, my daughter in law called for me to pick up things for the business she works in, my son called and he was in the ER to see why he was so sick with a pain in his side. All of these interruptions were Gods plan to bring me back home and not do the visit..
    God knows what’s best for me, he brought me home safely and I thank him for his love .

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