Steel Plates

Recently I was riding my bike, and I started to think about how roads are a lot like our lives, spiritual and otherwise.

In case you’ve never ridden a bicycle around Lexington, KY, it is a special treat of angry drivers yelling at you to “Share the road!” (I’m allowed to use the whole lane BTW), other angry drivers weaving around you going across double yellow lines toward oncoming traffic, and the occasional nice driver who is happy to obey the rules of the road and give you a safe place to ride. I’ve also found folks dodging steel plates in the road by swerving into my lane. Watching a large truck swerve into your lane five or so times much faster than the speed limit is an awe-inspiring and mildly terror-inducing sight, whether you’re on a bicycle or drive a little car like I do. After watching several cars, trucks, and larger vehicles in a row near my house do this, I got to thinking, “Isn’t that just how we live our lives?”

Frequently, there is steel plate on the road of our lives. Steel plates are great. They’re there to make the road drivable while something is getting fixed. Maybe it’s our relationships, our work life, a dry patch in our spiritual lives, but that steel plate is there, covering a hole in the road until it’s fixed. Now, to drive on a steel plate, one has to slow down, gently ride over top of it, take one’s time with it. But alas, how many times does one swerve around it, trying to get past the broken spot, trying to ignore the gap. How often when we swerve to avoid the steel plate in our lane, do we swerve into someone else’s lane and knock off a side mirror, scratch the paint, or worse, cause a full head-on collision? It takes time to fix the road of our lives sometimes, and until it is fixed, we need to slow down, and drive the steel plates gently.

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