Patience ~ Driving Lessons (Part 5 of 10)

Read Colossians 1:10-11a and potentially memorize verse 11a.

*This story is enhanced if you pre-read “Too Important to Ever Forget.”*

Scene 1

Narrator: “When you are around 15 years young, you have the crazy opportunity to receive a driver’s permit. You have probably anticipated this moment. You have dreamed about it and it has consumed a great deal of your attention. You are now trusted behind the wheel in the presence of a licensed driver beside you. It is an incredible experience with a roller coaster of emotions: excitement yet fear, freedom yet supervised, confident yet insecure.”

Parent: “Who used all of the milk and didn’t write it on the list on the fridge? We have nothing for breakfast! I guess I’m running to the grocery store for the umpteenth time this week.”

Kid: “Can I drive?” (Grabs keys and heads for the car.)

Parent: “I’m not sure I’m up for this.”

Kid: (Jumps in driver’s seat and starts the engine. “Route 66” plays on the radio. The kid pushes the seat back. Re-adjusts the mirrors to accommodate a La Z Boy reclining posture. As the car backs up the kid asks, “Can we listen to music from this century?

Parent: “Seatbelt?

Kid: “Got it.” (Attaches while driving.)

Parent: “We will just live without music today,” (and turns the radio off.)

Narrator: The scene continues with the parent offering verbal directions

Parent: “Blinker? Slow down! Look both ways. Check your mirrors.”

Narrator: The parent unconsciously accompanies the suggestions with a right foot pressing the floor on an imaginary brake pedal, periodically gasping, tight lips, covering eyes, etc. The kid responds, (while aggressively chewing gum) with statements reflecting confidence despite being obviously nervous. Finally, the car comes to an abrupt stop. Both passengers lunge forward, then relax. The parent folds hands and thanks Jesus for protection. While they close the car doors the kid asks a question.

Kid: “Can I grab a bag of Oreos while you get the milk?

Scene 2

Narrator: “And then comes the magical day when you receive your license! (Kid jumps up and screams with delight.) The word freedom takes on a whole new significance. Getting behind the wheel is exhilarating and exciting! You leap at every chance to drive even if there is nowhere to go.”

Parent: “Who used all of the milk and didn’t write it on the list on the fridge? We have nothing for breakfast! I guess I’m running to the grocery store for the umteenth time this week.”

Kid: “I got it! No problem. Can I grab some Oreos while I’m there?”

 

 

Parent: “Alright. But straight to the store and back. No detours. Take my debit card.”

Kid: (Jumps in drivers seat. Pushes seat back. The radio is the next agenda: the volume is cranked and “I Can’t Drive 55” rattles the windows. The mirror is readjusted to accommodate a La Z Boy reclining posture. The new licensed driver starts the engine and backs out the driveway and then onto the street. Before pulling forward the seatbelt is connected and sunglasses perched on top of the nose. As the car approaches a stoplight, the windows roll down. The kid looks out the window at another car waiting at the same light and mouths “how you doin?” because the music is too loud. The kid points right and mouths “grocery store.” Pause. The kid looks left and mouths “Sonic?” A final wink and the car lunges forward at the light. The kid turns left, turns down the radio and picks up the cell.)

“Hey, come to Sonic. My mom’s card is payin.”

Kid: (The car finds an easy spot in a shaded bay at the favorite drive-in.) “Oreo Blast, and do you guys sell milk?”

Scene 3

 Narrator: “Years later, maybe while in college, living in an apartment with careless roommates, the car driving perspective is shifting again. The thought of getting behind the wheel makes your blood boil. Driving is a last resort and only when necessary.”

Kid: “Who used all of the milk and didn’t write it on the list on the fridge? We have nothing for breakfast! I guess I’m running to the grocery store for the umteenth time this week. I would rather do without breakfast than fight traffic this time of day. But, we appear to be out of Oreos.”

Narrator: The kid begrudgingly gets back in the car. The radio plays “Jesus, Take the Wheel.” As the commute continues, the kid periodically expresses traffic frustration with sighs, grimaces and wheel slapping. At the final climax of frustration, through clenched teeth, frustration is articulated.

Kid: “Watch where you’re goin! Where did you learn to drive? Are you blind? If my car didn’t have my church’s name around my license plate, I’d give you a visual piece of my mind. Even Oreos aren’t worth the drive!”

Narrator: We can only see our lives from the white hot spotlight of the moment in which we live. One day, driving is a nervous experience. The next it is confident and joyful. And later, driving has become a negative event. It’s hard to imagine that we might see the exact same situation in a completely different light over the course of our lives. One day, when we are 15, a driver’s license is our greatest desire while, at the same time, sitting behind the wheel makes us afraid and excited all at the same time. We can barely imagine that before long the idea of sitting behind the wheel might fill us regret and remorse with the potential to elicit negative words from our mouths we wouldn’t normally say. PERSPECTIVE, what an interesting concept?

Often, I have heard young people express incredible anxiety over an event in their lives. It is usually the kind of catastrophic event that overshadows everything else. Sometimes, they respond with great grief, self-harm or depression. It is so hard to keep these tragic events in perspective.

There are so many adult situations into which we rush through without realizing how we will feel about the consequences when we are older. We waste so many of our current heart-beats in anticipation of the ones yet to come. Happiness is meant for the current moment, not “if or when” something else happens.

We allow our impatience with ourselves and our impatience with the world to rob us of peace in the present. Peace is meant for the current moment, not “if or when” something else happens.

Even as we age, we still fall into the trap of believing that joy is something yet to arrive. We convince ourselves that there are things to obtain or experience that will bring us contentment. Contentment is meant for the current moment, not “if or when” something else is achieved. 

This is too important to ever forget. Life is not meant to be rushed. Enjoy the gift of the present moment. Celebrate the great possibilities of this day. Contentment accompanies patience. Happiness follows contentment. Trust that the same God who has blessed us in the past is still in the business of blessing us today with many more blessings yet to come in our future. Patience, is God’s gift through the Holy Spirit, to help you self-love. (That sentence merits a re-read.)

Patience is the Fruit from the Holy Spirit that God showers on people who comprehend who they are as a child of God and how they are called to live in this world.

Regardless of the anxiety that bubbles up inside of you because of what you don’t know yet, or have yet, what you know and what you have in this moment is sufficient. You were born to experience patience and offer patience to an impatient world. Today, more than any other day, choose patience as your demeanor. Share patience, repeatedly and enthusiastically. Do not be drawn into the anxiety of hurried expectation. (Re-read that sentence.) May this string around your finger elicit a breath prayer every time you see it. May your prayer remind you that patience is a Fruit of the Holy Spirit. It is yours to seek, experience and share.

Be challenged. And then be ready to be blessed by patience.

Tie a string around your fourth finger and may it remind you of the power of patience.

 

Choose a breath prayer and memorize. Here are three examples for your consideration:

    1. “Holy Spirit, fill me with patience. Use me to inspire patience.”
    2. “May the seed of patience in me, bear Fruit of patience around me.”
    3. “As I rest in the Holy Spirit, patience rests in me.”

Repeat this prayer to yourself every time you glance at the string around your finger.

Say it. . .maybe 20 times today.

Mean it when you say it at least 5 times.

Change what you are doing to reflect this prayer at least once, today.

Take time to reflect, journal, pray

In the opening welcome and introduction to this website, I shared the Scripture that inspired this online adventure, I Tim 6:20. This text is also the origination of the name; “Sacred Chatter.” However, my intent is not to be a singular voice. I invite your voice to be a part of the “chat” and I base this on another of my favorite Scriptures: Hebrews 10:24. “And let us consider how to provoke one another to love and good deeds.” I am considering how I can provoke love and good deeds in places beyond where I live. This is my attempt to enter into a Hebrews 10 conversation with you over social media.digitally. Now, I am interested in your feedback. Consider what provoking you can provide with your own Sacred Chatter.

What’s important to you? What really matters?

Add your voice in Sacred Chatter.

Love is ours to provoke. Good deeds are ours to sew.

That the wisdom of Hebrews 10 may flourish and grow.

Email, Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, they’re potential mediums for the Hebrews 10 plan.

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