The Peace of Jesus Christ and the Distress of a Computer Melt Down

My computer died Monday morning at 5 AM.  The alarm on my phone went off- first at

“Looking at Canada from Detroit during winter”

4:58 with gentle tones that precede the jarring of the standard alarm.  Rolling over in the bed I turned off the phone.  I showered, dressed and then turned on the computer.  At 9 AM I was scheduled to deliver a special address at the Charles Wright Museum of African American History in celebration of the birthday of Martin Luther King Jr.


The computer whirred like it was thinking, but nothing happened.  The screen was dark.  The power cord was plugged in, but nothing happened.  After a couple of minutes, I put the laptop down and found my older lap top.  In an odd way, the older laptop still works – kind of.  The internal CD player no longer works.  The battery is dead.  The mouse pad on top of the computer is erratic.  Its old, but works in a less than optimal way.  Seven years ago I purchased a new laptop to replace the older machine.

To make a long story a little shorter, a sense of distress began to drape me like a curtain at the close of a stage play.  Nothing was working the way it was supposed to work.  My laptop would not work.  The old laptop was struggling.  My wife could not find her IPAD.  I pecked out a few words on the old laptop in the hope that I could put it on a flash drive and print from her PC laptop.  Nothing worked.  It was at that moment that the peace of God began to flood my soul.  I smiled at my wife and told her, “The people who show up this morning are going to get more of a speech than they imagine because I have no notes and will have to speak from memory.”

I pulled out all of the stops for that speech.  I began by playing “Oh freedom” on the harmonica and led the audience in singing this great song from the Civil Rights Movement.  Most of the people in the audience were too young to have participated in Civil Rights Rallies and Marches.  I was a child during the Movement, but my dad was part of it and told me a lot of stories from that time in history.  My brother Emory and I marched on both sides of our father in the 1963 March on Detroit.  Denise and I took part in the 20th anniversary on the March on Washington.  During the early 1960’s our church was one of the northern fundraising sites for the SCLC.  So, I saw and participated in rallies as a youth.  I got through the speech at the Museum and the first thing the next day I took my laptop to be repaired and at the same time I purchased a new computer.  The sales woman at the store said, “Hey, I saw you on TV yesterday giving a speech about Dr. King.”  I told her that was the reason I was there because I knew my computer was messed up and did not want to go through another experience like what I went through the day before.  As it turned out, the “Mother board” on the lap top is shot.  It has taken me all week long with a lot of help from the “Techies” in my church to reload all of the significant applications and programs on the new laptop- most importantly was reloading the Bible software I use – Logos.  So, here I am.  It was not until the laptop died that I was forced to admit how dependent I have become upon the computer.  To those who have looked forward to reading this spiritual blog I offer my apologies, but I hope you will understand.  Tonight, I write from my distress and now inner peace.  Tomorrow, I will write about “Getting on the Right Road.”  Thank you for reading this post.



Deuteronomy 4: 30 In your distress, when all these things have happened to you in time to come, you will return to the Lord your God and heed him.[1]


Questions for Reflection:

  1. When you are distressed what steps do you take to better insure inner peace?
  2. What are some of those things that promise inner peace, but in actuality can cause greater distress?
  3. How does Jesus Christ offer peace in the midst of personal stress?



Lord, I call upon you in my moments of distress.  I need your peace.  I want your calm.  Reassure me that there is no problem you cannot solve.  There is no pain you cannot erase.  Teach me to relax.  Teach me to trust in the faith that all things work together for good for those who love you.  Lord, I have heard your word that while with men and women things are impossible, with you all things are possible.  In my distress teach me to relax.  Grant me your peace.  Cool me with your calm.  Show me a better way to live and a faithful way to die.  Through Jesus Christ our Lord and Savior I pray.  Amen.


Written by Rev. Dr. Nicholas Hood III

Photo by Nicholas Hood III

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[1] The Holy Bible: New Revised Standard Version. (1989). (Dt 4:30). Nashville: Thomas Nelson Publishers.