Wednesday, October 1, 2014
Hidden in Trust
By Micky Wolf
As my beloved and I traveled 2,100 miles on our recent vacation, the view was similar to the one in the accompanying photograph. Eighteen wheelers. Lotsa them. Or at least it seemed, most of them finding a way to end up in front of our vehicle.
Given our destination, it could have simply been the traffic and the highways. We did need to drive through some heavily populated areas which meant congestion. But after awhile it seemed to be more than a random occurrence.
As Ignatius of Loyola states, “God in all things”. Whether you agree with that observation of life and circumstances or not, I had a different perspective on this particular phenomenon by the time we returned home.
Blocking the view…
At the very least, these trucks swallowed the space in front of us, making it difficult to see the big, green and white signs mounted over the interstates. Yes, we did have a GPS. We also had hard-copy maps. A bit old-school perhaps? (Smile) Nevertheless, I like to see where I’m going and being behind one these monsters meant we usually had moments to adjust speed or change a lane, if necessary.
God’s perspective? Trust me. You might not be able to see ahead as far as you like, but trust me. Really.
Okay, God. You definitely have our attention, considering the limited view at this particular moment.
To add to the fun and suspense—do those actually go together?—a significant part of the driving involved at least three lanes in each direction, and at times, six. That’s twelve lanes. Too say nothing of the two additional lanes of assorted trucks and cars in adjacent on ramps attempting to merge with ours at any given moment.
It’s probably clear by this point we do not live in a metropolitan area. That’s the way we like it. Not that our home and lifestyle are rural in the slightest, but we have always preferred smaller cities.
So, getting back in the lane(s).
When presented with so many options, we better have a clear sense of where we are going in the moment. Even better, we need to know Who we are following; otherwise, the maze and mass of other people and possibilities may pull us off course and lead to unpleasant consequences.
Which leads to the next aspect of the perspective.
Detours and delays…
My, oh my, did we encounter extended miles of construction and repair. Orange barrels. Orange cones. Cement dividers. Steel fencing. Soft shoulders. Double shifting lanes. Paying utmost attention to our surroundings was critical. Failure to do so could result in becoming a semi-permanent part of the landscape for sure. And that’s not all.
Note to self—remember that when accidents occur on any stretch of road within vague proximity to, or directly going through a metropolis, the highway remains open, even if that means only one lane (of the aforementioned several) that is passable.
Seems the thinking is that funneling six into one for the purpose of moving ahead at a snail’s pace for an indeterminate period of time is better than no progress at all. Sigh. Small comfort that all the texting and talking we witnessed is somehow safer when a herd of snails is moving in the same direction? Then again, the slow rotation of our wheels did allow for eating a sandwich as we counted LEDs in the twinkling red brake lights staring back at us.
God’s perspective? Trust me. You might not be able to see ahead or move ahead as far or as fast as you like, but trust me. Really? Okay, God.
Acceptance without resentment…
While more than tedious at times, we thoroughly enjoyed our vacation and yes, our driving adventures. Why?
If for no other reason than to realize we have grown so much in learning to accept what we cannot change—and trusting God in the process.
Control is mostly an illusion. Choices are another story. It was up to us how we chose to respond on the occasions when navigating and driving required our full concentration and patience. No, I was not always a saint and did let fly—quietly—with a few muttered expletives. That will happen when some dingbat whizzes past you from the inside shoulder and cuts in front with less than a hair’s space to spare—no kidding. And, sadly, no signal either.
What we really hoped for was to make the choice to accept what was happening without letting our (human) frustration turn into resentment vented at one another. Physically spent and emotionally drained at times, we resolved to not let the circumstances keep us from being kind and loving toward one another. Did we do it perfectly, every moment? No. Yet the good news is the challenges drew us closer.
I don’t often find myself behind big rigs these days, and that is fine with me. On the other hand, when it does happen I have a sense God is smiling. Yep. With the gentle reminder—trust me. You might not be able to see ahead as far as you like, but you can trust me.
And so, how about you, fellow traveler?