Strapped In

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I feel the same tension as I’m driving.  Jonah is in his car seat and what has actually been 1 hour, now seems like twenty.

Cheezits, The Hungry Caterpillar, green army men, and an entire box of animal crackers have not sufficed in making the trip less exhausting.  This journey is taking forever…at least that’s what I hear Jonah’s voice saying as he cries, “Momma…mom!”  I watch him uncomfortably pull on the seat belt, as it looks so tight to me.

I turn up our only salvation…Justin Bieber singing “Baby” and for a moment Jonah bee-bops to the rhythm of the music.  The song is now over and the agitation begins again.  Five minutes have passed.  We play the song again.  And then again.

When Justin can no longer assist us in our grasp towards sanity, I turn and plead towards the Heavens… “Please, God, make this journey go faster.”  There is no relief in sight.

As I look back towards Jonah’s car seat, I watch him tug and pull on the seatbelt again that has him snuggly attached.  He cannot move.  He is exasperated.

And it dawns on me….this is me…..this is how I feel right now. 

Jonah’s mother has packed a small bag of chex mix, and that gives us some relief for a few minutes while I begin to ponder why the parallel seems so true to my soul.

I pray these words…quietly….

God, this is me!  It’s exactly how I feel now.  Pushed and shoved and definitely not prepared for what happened.  And now I am strapped into a seat on a bus, traveling on a journey that wasn’t on my map.

I have watched as other people strapped me into this seat and waved goodbye.

And I missed what was familiar and brought comfort.

Now, the straps seem tight, I can’t see the road ahead, and I feel so confined.  Get me out of here!!! 

Get me out NOW!

Jonah has finished the snack and is quietly looking for his Eyore blanket.  The sun is setting in the sky, and he looks at the fields as we drive by them.  I try to offer encouragement, comfort, and peace.  I tell him that he has to stay in his seat.  It’s protection for him.  Soon, he can get out and run and play with Grandpa at the farm, but for now, he must rest and try to enjoy the ride.  It’s the best thing for him.  He crinkles his eyes and smiles as he rests his head now and seems to relax into the calmed spirit of my voice.

And then it dawns on me…why am I so slow at this God-teaching stuff?  The parallel makes more sense than ever.

I have been fighting this.  Over and over the resentment creeps in, as it would to anyone here on planet Earth.  Over and over I feel the anger that someone else chose my path. But after they tried to push and shove me … God picked me up from the situation, plucked me out, put me in a safe place on the bus of life, strapped me in for my protection, and said,

“Have peace.  We’re headed out of here and traveling to somewhere else now.   It might feel like you’re constrained for a while.  It might seem unfamiliar and scary.  But the truth is…I, the Almighty God, have placed you in the bus, tightened the straps for safety and am journeying you to the next place. 

Rest your head.  Look out the window and watch where I am taking you.  It will be a place that is great for you, because no man can stop my plans for you.  They are for good.  Wait til you get where we’re going. I am driving. Trust me, Kathy, you’re going to love it!”

Jonah is strapped in.  He is safe and protected.  I am driving my grandson.  I know that where we’re going is a place that he loves.  It might be painful to journey there….at least for awhile….but when we get there…..the joy begins.

I lean my head back and rest in the calmness of God’s voice.

  1. Cindy Polzin05-20-11

    Oh… how I needed to read this, and get it. Have been wondering for along time, why this path, when it can be so hard and long. Thank You for sharing!