Traffic

My own great Highness has been revealing and prodding and touching me. :) ..He always is, but I’ve been quiet enough to hear His voice lately.

..and it’s.. 

::speechless sigh::

But anyway.. I do actually have something to say.. this one BIGGIE He’s been showing me over the past several weeks is a parallel. He knows I grasp things BEST when they’re parablaic (new word, means “in parable form). ANyway, the parallel is: 

This Spiritual Journey = Traffic..

I don’t have time enough to go through the run-down of all the beautiful revelational parallels He’s shown me, there are just SO many. But I’ll do as many as I will..

So I was driving down the road the other day, behind an old man with a hat on, bless his heart.. and he was going about fifteen miles under the speed limit. I knew the road, so I knew that there was no passing for miles. I wanted to murder him. Not really, but the FEELing was “murder.” I usually do about five to ten miles OVer the speed limit, and this guy was throwing off my GROOve. I had somewhere to BE, I had things to get DONE. I was on the CLOCK! He had NO idea my situation, because if he did, he’d either go faster or pull over and let me go in front of him. But since he didn’t know me or my situation, my temptation was to ride his bumper just to LET him KNOW how much I hated him. He may never know me, he may never care – but by God he would know my ANGER.

Can you see the parallel? Feel free to stop for a sec and THINK about it.. it’s awesome.

God convicted me in my heart of miny-miny things..siiiiigh, and I sat in my car behind the old man, remembering His love for me.. bringing it to the forefront of my mind and heart.. recalling the things He’d done for me, the things He’d given me, the peace always available to me, the grace that surrounds me.. and suddenly I realized that the DESTINATION was ONLY HALF the JOURNEY! Thank GOD for the destination! It gives hope, vision, drive, motivation.. but if that’s the ONLY thing I focus on.. well, other things happen that I’ll talk about in a sec– but if I’m focused solely on the JOURney, I’ll get TOtally overwhelmed with the traffic around me! 

So – being a person of extremes – I took that revelation and RAN with it. I decided that the GOAL was what I wanted to focus on, and let my surroundings.. the people in front, the people behind.. all gooooo. Unfortunately – like I just mentioned – this “other thing” happened. Namely, I almost DIED because I wasn’t paying any attention to the MOMENT. I left the present and was CENTERED in the FUTURE. 

BIG MISTAKE (as the Spleen says in “Mystery Men)!

I lost touch with the journey! I was driving down the road, being so “spiritually-minded” that I plumb didn’t consider my fellow journeymen! I almost ran into people, I didn’t notice when people were cutting me off.. I was not of sober mind. This place, I think, is almost more dangerous than being too journey-minded.

So, I’ve been working on staying centered in Christ as a LIFEstyle, not necessarily a consciousness. ..Does that make sense? Like.. you learn how to operate a car.. it takes a while, but after a while, the motions become second nature. You automatically buckle up, you automatically put the clutch in when you turn the key, you automatically flip the lights on.. etc. It’s not a conscious decision.. it’s a kind of faith in the structure and physics of the car.. and the structure and metaphysics of the road system. :) ..don’t I sound intelligent..

ANyway.. so I was driving along one day after this.. drinking my coffee and eating an apple, happily healthy, driving to yoga, loving GOD and LIFE and MUSIC.. when..

SOME IDIOT pulled up behind me and almost TOUCHed my bumper. Again.. the temptation was to act out of my emotions. I wanted to SPEED like a CRAZY person and SHOW that bleepety-bleep that I COULD go fast, I just CHOSE to drive the BLEEPING SPEED LIMIT because I didn’t want to pay a billion DOLLars to the bleeping POPOs. (Can you feel the emotion?) But then I thought, “HECK, I’ll just slooooow DOWn you freaking FREAK so you CAN hit me, then you can freakin’ PAY FOR A NEW CAR for me! JEEEEERK.”

So, needless to say, I completely forgot about my apple, coffee, yoga, life, music, health, and GOD. I forgot. Suddenly they meant NOTHing to me. The one thing in the forefront of my knowledge.. the one thing I was stANDing on.. was that this person behind me was NOT following the RULes.

This ties into another experience I had on the road recently. I was doing an unusual amount of driving, this particular day.. and I witnessed at least FOUR people run red lights. I would normally have been a little smug and never thought about it again, but since there were so many.. and they were all so BLAtant, it got my wheels spinning (no pun intended).

When people don’t follow the rules.

There are so many rules. So many gray areas too. For instance, the speed LIMIT is 55, but I was going 65 the other day and a policee-man passed me, just going about 67. I knew a policeman once who said he wouldn’t pull anyone over on the interstate for going 15 miles over the limit. But Cindy R. was pulled over for going FIVE miles over.. (this could go into corruption of the governing authority..) Another gray area would be the yellow light! ..I never know whether to speed up or slow down! Others are stop signs (complete stop?), blinkers in turning lanes, blaring music, blaring muffler, tinted windows, passing in the right lane.. and the list goes on.

There was an instance a week or so ago where I was going to some friends’ house, and I knew for a fact that there were going to be fifty bajillion cars there.. and these friends live on a narrow street with limited parking.. in a somewhat shady neighborhood. As I was nearing the house, my suspicions were confirmed.. no parking for about a quarter of a mile away, and several shady-looking neighbors were standing around that area.. they looked irritated that so many cars were in front of their yards.

I had a few options at that point. It was a gray area.. so I could:

1) Turn around and go home; screw the Vision, calling, and journey.. these intimidating neighbors and the impending walk back were too much!!!
2) Park in the middle of their party; put myself in possible danger, especially of getting my feelings hurt.. they might be scary, but doggone it, the Vision doesn’t need to be protected!!!
3) Drive around and worry for a few hours; nothing helps a situation like thinking it to death, ey? A speciality of mine.. think about EVERY SINGLE possibility until I’m pretty sure I could face any of them.. which I never would because I’m so busy worrying about what would happen if I did.. AHH!!!! or..
4) Follow the smaaaaall, tiny little voice in my stomach that said, “Pop over to Josh’s house!”

Which is what I did.. and a friend was there, and we talked! And it was good. Then he rode with me back to the friends’ house, where there was an empty parking space right smack dab in front of the house.

I’m just.. I’m just STRUCK by how God.. He just KNOWS. Solomon said, “The mind of a man plans his ways, but the LORD directs his steps.” I totally have a plan made and a pair of feet to carry it out!.. but His plan, time and time again, proves to be so.. so much better than mine. The key is a listening, teachable, and right-sized soul before Him.

Ooooooookee dokee, well, I’ve got to go deposit a check.. I wonder how long this post is.. I feel like I’ve been writing for three minutes, but I just looked up and saw that it’s been almost an hour! Gracious. Josh Garrels will do that.. :)

Deep, deep love to all..

1 thought on “Traffic”

  1. Carla,

    You crack me up!!!!

    I thought of how Pastor Field ALWAYS appeared to be living a Christ cented life, as I was reading your post. I wondered if he ever felt (when he was younger and more of a speed demon) like you (and I, most days) in traffic. Somehow, it gives me great comfort to think that he didn’t and THAT life is attainable. I love your heart and realness (is that a word). Oh, by the way…I asked Sarah once what a yellow light ment and she expressed with great conviction, “speed up mom…good grief!!” so that has been my motto until they installed those dang cameras.

    Have a blessed day
    Erin

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