In Virginia in July, the corn stands majestically tall. Silk tops glisten in the sunshine lined up in rows in fields as far as the eye can see. Twice a week I take a bike ride on a trail that will eventually extend from from Jamestown to Richmond. There is a winding stretch through the cornfields. In July it seems like I am riding in a tunnel, something like the corn maze at Rock City. Oh, what fun! The other months of the year the same area is clear sailing, wide open farm land. During the peak of this growing season I have to be more aware. The corn forms a wall and on the curved turns there needs to be the capability of some quick maneuvering with the brakes. The other day I was passing two women on bikes who were having their morning gab session. All of a sudden another woman was approaching from the other direction on hers. It made for quick decisions for everyone and we all hit the brakes with the approaching woman yelling out, “What the heck!” Or it might have been “What the “*#+¥*!” I wasn’t sure, but I knew she wasn’t happy.
Two years ago, the year I was to turn 60, my daughter, Molly said we should enter a mini- triathlon race. “Mini” was the operative word. I might have to blog about that experience on another day. I knew I needed to get ready for the bike portion of the race. It was during the July corn days. At the time, I had a decent bike, but I knew I would have an advantage if I rode Bill’s bike. I began to practice. There was a small problem because his brakes were more sensitive than mine. On top of that, I kept getting confused as to which brake controlled which wheel. Again, doing my usual two things at once, I was talking on my cell phone while riding the bike through the corn fields. I realized I needed to slow down so I applied pressure to the left brake and the rest is history. I’m sure that the first shots at Fort Sumter did not go as far as my body when it was propelled over the handlebars onto the asphalt. Yes, I was scraped from top to bottom on one side, but thankfully nothing was broken. Slowly, I moved. Slowly, I sat up. Slowly, I got up. Finally, there was nothing to do but get on my bike, hold tears back and ride home. It’s embarrassing to say, but this happened one more time before I really got it straight: right hand, front wheel; left hand, back wheel. Such a simple concept.
When we have to put on the brakes in our lives it can be as dramatic as my splat in the cornfields. My first instinct is to stop the pain before moving on. I am finding out that it is not always the case. I don’t have the luxury of complete healing and feeling better before I have to get up and move on. Sometimes the pain doesn’t ease until we start walking in the new places God is taking us. It is in the midst of my hurt, not the removal of it, that I can see new life. When we see God using hard situations in good ways, then our hurts begin to ease. Although there will always be scars and reminders we can know that there is opportunity to get up and keep moving.
On these summer days when I ride my bike through the cornfields I pass the place that I took my nosedive. I am reminded of how it hurt; how I stayed there for a bit; how eventually I had to get back up on my bike and start pedaling. I had no other choice. Staying there until they started making scarecrows out of the old stalks wouldn’t fix Humpty Dumpty. It didn’t feel good and I had to take a rest from training for a few days, but I eventually saw healing. Yes, I have a couple of scars to prove that it all happened, but I was able to ride again.
The Lord is the great healer of all our pain and hurt whether on an asphalt trail or in the very private parts of our hearts where no one else can see. Our scars are reminders of the healing. My impatience wants healing to come quickly. Jesus, my ultimate healer, is taking care of more than the places that I see, but giving strength in the bigger story.
“He heals the heartbroken and bandages their wounds. He counts the stars and assigns each a name. Our Lord is great with limitless strength; we’ll never comprehend what he knows and does.” Psalm 147:3-5 (The Message)
3 thoughts on “Putting on the Brakes”
Lindy, thank you for this ministry. Each entry is as if you are speaking directly to me. Always in His love…..Shelia Jones
I am so blessed by your words and heart thoughts in your blog! Thank you for taking the time to put to words life lessons that you’ve learned. I hope to see you at one of our ADPi reunions. Not sure I’ll make the one at Susan’s in September. We’ll see how my husband is doing then…
Much love to you~ Susan Balloon
You have encouraged me to start walking in the new places God is taking me and to get some exercise. I think I’ll go for a bike ride. It’s a beautiful day.