It’s amazing what a slave we are to our own minds.
I woke up yesterday in a really bad mood. The sun was shining, birds were chirping, and it was an absolutely gorgeous day. And given the fact that my kids and I had been stuck in a car during a tornado the day before, you would think I would have welcomed this change of scenery with a big smile and an open heart. But nope. I was grumpy.
We went to church. Still – nothing. All I could think about was the fact that I’m in this sea of people where I know very few of them and feel like a fish out of water. I listened to the message, I enjoyed the songs, but then I filed out with the rest of the crowd and went home to forget all about it. Typical Sunday for me these days.
We get home, and I’m just in a slump. I promise Kelly we’ll go for a walk outside after I take a nap (hoping that would cure the problem..), but no sooner did I close my eyes than the phone rings telling me that I ‘forgot’ that I was supposed to take the kids back to their dad’s after church because they had family visiting (“I did NOT forget – you never told me!!”). So, now, the kids are gone and I’m not only grumpy, I’m alone.
Then I get a text from a friend. A friend who owns a motorcycle. Hmmmmm. The wheels begin to turn (ha! no pun intended), and I think… Here are my options. I can stay on this couch in my grumpy state of mind and sleep the rest of the day away. OR, I could take advantage of the fact that I know my friend so well that I am certain that he’s going to be out on that motorcycle before the day was through and wouldn’t mind Eeyore herself tagging along on the back of it. So, I shamelessly begged for a ride (ok, I just asked once, but it felt like shamelessly begging), and was told to ‘come on over.’ So, off we went.
It is amazing the thoughts that go through your mind while you’re on a motorcycle. Why is that, I wonder? (If you ask my friend Chris, he says it’s because I’m forced to shut-up for the duration of the ride and that’s a rare feat. Oh, hey, that’s probably why he likes to take me on motorcycle rides….Hmmm…) Anyway, so I’m riding along…yes, quietly…and all of a sudden it hits me to apologize to God. Apologize to God? With tears in my eyes, I looked around at this beautiful world around me, and things started to look different. I watched the people in this little idyllic town we passed through go about their business on a lazy Sunday afternoon; I saw a man holding the hand of his little girl as they walked along a trail; I watched the cows grazing in the pasture; I waved at a dog following us alongside the road; I did the ‘motorcyle wave’ (oh yeah, I’m that cool) at other bikers as they passed by (of course I also did the ‘motorcyle wave’ at a moped, but I didn’t know the difference in the protocol…); I realized that I felt safe and secure on this dangerous machine because the man in front of me cares enough about me to never put me in danger; I thought about those precious little redheads at their daddy’s house who would be there waiting for me to pick them up when their family get-together was over…. In a split second, all of those thoughts and images hit me at once and all I could think to do was look up and tell God I’m sorry. Just like that, out of the blue, I apologized to the guy that I have barely spoken to at all in over a year. I’m sorry for being a little brat. I’m sorry for letting all these same images in and out of my brain just hours earlier and not even giving them a second thought. I’m sorry that I had just spent the day listening to your word and spending time with the two little angels you’ve let me borrow for a while…and it never even dawned on me to fall on my knees and thank you profusely for giving me the life that you’ve given me. Yes, I have problems. Everyone has problems. But look at the bounty of blessings I have. Look at them! What a lucky, silly, selfish, stupid girl I am.
I got off that bike, gave my sweet friend a hug (hoping he knows how much I appreciate him), and went to pick up my daughter. We went for a long walk beside the river; imitated ducks (guess you had to be there..); tossed sticks in a waterfall and followed them down the stream into the river; skipped; trespassed at an abandoned house (yep, that was fun too); and then found huge walking sticks and made our way back to the car. We went home, and I tucked that sweet little thing into bed, and I went to sleep…with a roof over my head and snuggled under a warm blanket with a sleeping fat cat to keep to me company.
What an amazing change from the time I woke up until the time I went to bed.
Perspective, man. It’s serious stuff.
~ 04/11/11 ~
I love that.