St. Joseph Province

Missionaries Of Compassion

“Do as I have done” Jn 13,15


Mrs. Bayer stood at her living room window, which opened out onto a busy street. She noticed that a little lath was loose on the window frame and decided to fix it by herself. But doing that would require her getting into a very awkward position for using the hammer. She leaned her left arm onto the window sill and with a rather large hammer in her right hand tried to hit the head of a nail which was an arm’s length away. She had to be careful of the glass, so she did not dare to give the nail one solid blow. But with a few small taps of the hammer she drove it home. And just at that moment something happened. The hammer slipped out of her hand onto the window frame and down to the footpath far below. With a racing pulse and shock on her face, Mrs. Bayer looked down from a height of three storeys onto the crowd below …. and then heard a dull thud. She raced down the stairs to see whether she could still prevent some nasty accident. She arrived at street level, white as a sheet, and shaking all over. And what did she see? The handle of the hammer had pierced the fabric sun roof over a baby’s pram. The baby’s little hand was playing with the new toy that now dangled just in front of its shining surprised eyes. The most noteworthy part of the story is the young mother’s version of what had actually happened. She had left the pram outside a store where she wanted to shop. But just before entering the shop, she turned back to the pram and pulled the roof up over it. There was no wind, no rain was falling, and the sun was not shining. To this day that mother does not know why she did that. 

Even a very casual examination of happenings in our lives would throw up any number of such “whys” for which we have no reasonable answer. They are the result of what I call ‘Providence,’ of which I am a firm believer. Nothing happens by chance.

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