The Great Purse Alarm Incident of 2009

My mother is, well, elderly, and we all worry about her getting out and about. My niece gave her a purse alarm, so if anyone tried to rob her, the sound would deter a would-be thief. The device hooks to your purse and the other end to your wrist. If the purse is jerked away, the two ends separate and a loud, obnoxious (make that very obnoxious) noise fills the air. Easy, right? (It is a great idea.)
So, my mother and I went shopping. I was browsing through clothing and my mom was looking at a rack of clearance shoes, and I could still see her, no one was within ten feet of her tiny little form.
I had just found a nice sweater when I heard an alarm. It was really loud, and I looked to the cash registers first, but the ladies there were craning their necks to find the source of the noise. Then it hit me…it had to be my mom’s purse alarm! I glanced her way, but she was still calming looking at shoes, and her oversized purse was still on her arm. But as more shoppers looked her way I realized it had to be her alarm.
As I walked toward the shoes, the noise grew louder, yet she was still calmly perusing the shoes. The noise was deafening around her-the purse alarm. I smiled and waved to onlookers, assuring them we’d stop the alarm. Finally, she moved in close to me. “I didn’t have the alarm on my wrist, I was holding it. I forgot about it when I saw these shoes and I moved my purse from one arm to the other.” she whispered. “I dropped the other half of the alarm. It’s in one of these shoes.”
It wasn’t attempted robbery, alarm malfunction…it was simply user error— to my great relief. But later, as I thought back, the incident reminding me of 1 Corinthians 13:1
Though I speak with the tongues of men and of angels, and have not charity, I am become as sounding brass, or a tinkling cymbal. (or a purse alarm that won’t stop beeping because you dropped the other half of it in a shoe)
The alarm wasn’t much good when you didn’t use it correctly. As I applied this to my life, I thought about how God gave us user instructions. The Bible. And how the Bible clearly states we need to first have love to properly function. And no matter what I do—write, edit, post a blog— for me to “work correctly” I must do whatever I do in love. I had gotten so wrapped up (no pun intended) in Christmas, I was so busy, I wasn’t following my instructions.
And after the “Great Purse Alarm Incident of 2009” as I purchased the remainder of my gifts, made the ten dozen or so cookies, attended various functions, I was reminded by a simple purse alarm to remember the Reason for the Season, the Love God showed for us by sending His Son, Jesus.

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