Tag Archives: Christian life

I Don’t Like This Road

Do not seek to follow in the footsteps of the wise. Seek what they sought. ~Matsuo Basho

My mother gets terribly carsick. She has lived all of her life in curvy, mountainous West Virginia, and the sickness has never left her.

There are roads that she refuses to use because experience has taught her that she will have lunch twice, maybe three times. It seems unfair that she should never have relief.

It also seems unfair that she should have beautiful vistas at her every turn when others don’t have such sights. Their rear view mirror reflects dumpsters and street lights. They peer through windshields to see smoggy valleys and graffiti-filled alleys.

Everyone travels their own road.

Maybe that seems harsh to you.

You cry out to God, “WHY!?”

Why do I have to be deaf? Why is my child autistic?  Why does my husband look at other women? Why can’t I have a baby? Why don’t I get a good job? Why am I short, tall, black, brown, too thin, too fat . . .

But what if it is only the road that is making you sick? If you stop the car for a minute, do you see a beautiful vista on the horizon? Is there a sunset glowing over top of the smog?

Jesus asks us to walk down the Via Dolorosa with him, a road that leads to death. Will you go?

People will throw stones. There will be sweat, spit, and blood. Angry curses will be hurled your way. The rest of your life will be affected. Your friends may even turn their backs on you.

But you get to walk beside the Savior of the World. He knows your name and his eyes look into your soul.

It’s worth it, isn’t it?

What if the road you are on now is the one Jesus has asked you to travel? Your deafness makes you notice things that hearing people don’t. Your autistic son amazes you with his insight. You counsel other women, adopt a homeless child, learn to be content, even generous. Do you still want off? Will you still beg for another route?

Or will you idle the motor a bit and see what beauty surrounds you?


Be joyful in hope, patient in affliction, faithful in prayer. Romans 12:12 NIV

 

Searching for Treasure

shopping cartThere was a time when I was a coupon queen. A few years ago I gave up my throne, which took a lot of my time and energy, to become a lowly citizen of an Aldi store. They take no coupons, have fewer options, and make my life easier. Besides that, they have super great prices.

There are a few peculiarities of an Aldi store. You have to put a deposit on a grocery cart. You bag your own groceries, meaning you also bring your own bag. And they do not deal with credit. They are a “cash only” store, which means you can use a debit card, check, or folding money.

Except for one day last week. On Wednesday I made my weekly stop by the store only to find a sign on the door that read, “Cash only today.” That meant the machines were down and folding money was the only acceptable form of currency.

I don’t keep cash on me, so I had to drive across town to the bank, take out cash, drive back across town, and do my shopping. I passed three groceries on my way. One of the groceries is in the same lot as my bank.

So why would I drive so far, pass up so much, be so devoted to one store? Because I know where the treasure is.

Some may think that living the life of a Christian means giving up a lot. Why would I go to church on Sundays when I live so close to the beach? Why would I give my money to other people when I have so many other things I could buy? Why would I follow “old traditions” when I am an adult and can live the way I want?

All of these and many more questions can be answered with one response: I know where the treasure is.

Sure it has some requirements. I made a deposit on my cart. I have to bag a lot of my own groceries. And the options aren’t as plentiful. But why would I shop anywhere else? The price has already been paid and I have the receipt.

The kingdom of heaven is like treasure hidden in a field. When a man found it, he hid it again, and then in his joy went and sold all he had and bought that field. Matthew 13:44 NIV