One morning not long ago, it all went wrong. We had a full day scheduled from dawn to dusk. First on the list, help our neighbor put up a canopy. I was up early and already a little stressed just thinking about the long day ahead. Then it happened. Between our house and our neighbors’, there is a small field, and somehow, on the walk across, the car keys vanished. We had them, and then we didn’t.

Cue panic. We retraced all our steps and combed the field section by section. We got down on our hands and knees and felt through the grass. We even got my father’s metal detector and marched it around, checking and rechecking. My blood pressure was rising the longer we looked and found nothing. An hour passed, and still no keys. I was totally frustrated and upset.

Finally, we stopped everything and prayed and felt that we should go ahead with the planned tent setup. Some of my friends kept looking for the errant keys, but without success. At last, the search was called off. The day continued, but a cloud hung over it.

That night, I lay in bed, still bothered by the whole situation. I couldn’t understand why this had happened, especially when we already had so much to do. Now we needed an expensive replacement key—and couldn’t use the car while we waited for it. No silver lining that I could see.

A few days later, one of my close friends suddenly burst through the door. “The keys, the keys! I found them!” she shouted. Dumbfounded, I watched her set them down and disjointedly asked, “But … Where? … How?” With a huge smile, she explained how she’d been crossing the field when she decided to look a bit more once again. She prayed and began to search. Suddenly, right there in front of her were the lost keys!

I have to admit I still don’t know how or why this happened. But I have an inkling of how God worked this for good in my life, resulting in more patience for me, and a reminder that, even when my plans go awry, our lives are never out of His hands.