An important interview, a long ride home,no time to find a missing pair of suit slacks.
|Word Count: 1455
“Pressed” for Time
By Donna Lowich
The phone rang, breaking the silence on this Monday evening that my husband, Walter, and I had gotten used to since our son, Jeff
had first gone off to college. That was four years ago. He was now pursuing a second degree in equine management at the
University of Louisville. His goal: to attain certification in the program to open the way for him to work in some capacity with horses and
the racetrack industry. He’s loved horses since his first visit to the track when he was five years old. I secretly worried about
where this career path would take him. I envisioned him getting a job across the country. I was praying for an outcome that would please
both of us.
I picked up the phone. It was Jeff! We talked for just a minute when Jeff asked, “Mom, could you put Dad on the phone, too? There’s
something I want to tell you both.”Once Walter was on the line, Jeff announced, “I am coming home this week. It’s Spring
Break…and I have a job interview at Monmouth Park!”
Monmouth Park is a racetrack less than an hour away from us. In fact, Jeff had spent the last three summers there as a security
guard. Now, he was going to interview for a job as a manager!
We congratulated Jeff and I asked him when he was coming home, He said, “I’m driving home tomorrow. My interview is on
“That’s wonderful news! I’m glad you brought your suit with you. That way you’ll have everything ready.” Already my motherly advice was
kicking in—happy that Jeff had an opportunity to get a job in his chosen field and still be near friends and family.
My prayers were answered! But little did I know then that was not to be the end of my prayers to help Jeff.
We said our goodbyes and hung up the phone. Walter and I began to plan dinner for Jeff when he arrived home. Within the hour, the
phone rang again.
Again, it was Jeff. But this time the tone of his voice was different. Instead of relaxed and happy, he now sounded tense and anxious.
“Mom, I am getting ready to pack my clothes. I found my suit jacket but I can’t find the slacks. I’ve looked everywhere. They’re just
“I was sure you packed them both. In fact, I remember seeing the jacket. I’m pretty sure I saw the slacks with it.”
“I thought so, too. But I don’t have much space here and I’ve checked everything. I don’t have enough time to get another suit. Can
you please check in my room to see if maybe they’re still hanging in there?”
“Of course we will. We’ll call you back in a few minutes.”
That launched both Walter and me into action. We checked carefully in Jeff’s closet but the slacks were not to be found. From there,
we checked each of our closets just to be sure the slacks didn’t mistakenly find their way there.. A search of these potential hiding
places didn’t pan out, either.
Now we were as desperate as Jeff. What could have happened to the suit pants? So desperate were we that we even checked the
coat and storage closets! Still, Jeff’s elusive suit slacks remained missing.
Walter looked over at me. “I don’t know where else to look, to be honest. We’ll have to call Jeff back and let him know. I don’t know
what he can do.”
I was panicked momentarily as well. We were running out of time. Then I thought of another scenario: what if we found the slacks?
They would probably need to be cleaned and pressed. Again, the time factor was against us.
I began to pray for a happy if somewhat unobvious solution to our problem. My prayer was simple and straight from my heart: “Please,
dear Lord, help us find Jeff’s slacks so he can go to that interview. This is so very important to him and he needs Your
help right now. Please help us.”
Reluctantly, we called Jeff to tell him that we had looked but hadn’t found the slacks. We told him all of that but also told him that we
were not stopping and as long as we could think of other possible places to search, we would do just that. In fact, we might go
back to our closets again, just in case. And of course, I told him I was praying for some Divine assistance!
After hanging up the phone, Walter and I took yet another look in the closets before going to bed. Our plan was to get up early and
continue to search in any new places that could possibly be hiding the slacks. We were running out of new places to look; maybe
the morning’s search of our closets would yield new results. In the meantime, the clock was ticking away the seconds, minutes and
hours left until Jeff was leaving Louisville for home.
I said more prayers before finally falling to sleep. I believe that problems always seem to loom less large in the morning. I wasn’t so
sure about what would happen this time. Both Walter and I had to go to work after doing our search so we didn’t have much time.
In the morning, I woke up with a feeling of dread that changed after saying some prayers asking for the Lord to help us find a solution.
“Please, dear God, please help us to help Jeff. Amen.”
I felt better for saying it but still couldn’t figure out what solution could possibly arise out of our current situation. I got dressed and
was downstairs when I heard Walter calling from upstairs. I got to the base of the steps. Walter was standing at the top with an
incredulous look on his face.
“What’s the matter? You look as though you’ve seen a ghost!”
“I think I have—almost.” Walter replied as he swung his arm from behind his back. On it, hung a pair of slacks—THE slacks, the
mysteriously-missing slacks! There they were, nicely pressed and neatly folded over the hanger.
I was dumbfounded, as well. I didn’t even know where to start the long list of questions that kept popping into my mind. So I started
“Are they Jeff’s slacks?” (I just wanted to confirm, for my own benefit).
Walter, still apparently speechless, just nodded.
I countered with another question, the most obvious one, in fact: “Where did you find them?”
“In my closet.”
“In your closet?” I repeated in amazement. Without waiting for an answer, I quickly added, “How could that be?”
“They were in my closet,” Walter replied, “but wait until you hear this.”
He had a quizzical expression on his face. He looked mystified, confused, perplexed.
He continued: “Not only were they in my closet, they were right in the FRONT of the closet. As soon as I opened the door, they were
right in front of me. I don’t know how I could have missed them! AND, the clothes on either side of them were pushed away. If
they were like that last night, I never could have missed them. It’s very strange.”
“It’s not strange, it’s an answer to a prayer---my prayer.”
We telephoned Jeff with our good news. “Great!” was Jeff’s response, sounding much
relieved. “I don’t know what I would’ve done if you hadn’t found them…I wonder how
they ended up there?”
Walter reiterated what he had told me earlier: “It IS weird, isn’t it?”
But I knew better. I corrected him again. “It’s NOT strange OR weird. It’s the answer to a prayer.” I proceeded to give Jeff a brief
rundown of what happened since his last call to us and my prayer for him.
“Wow, that’s really something,” was Jeff’s comment. “But in any case, you have to admit it IS a strange story—but ‘strange’ in a good
We all agreed and said our goodbyes. Jeff had to get ready to leave for he had a very long, eleven-hour drive home.
The next day was Interview Day. Jeff was ready and on his way, early for his appointment. He didn’t say much but I knew he was both
anxious and excited. As he left, I said another quick prayer: “Bless him, Lord, and let him do well today. Thank you for
Jeff did do well that day; they offered him the job, which he promptly accepted. He moved back home until he was able to purchase a
condo closer to the track.
It was everything I could have asked for—and got—because of an answered prayer.