Last Monday, I was on my way to work. It’s a 10 km (around 6 mi) distance via the main road, and about 11 km (close to 7 mi) if I take the back way. When there is plenty of light still, I take the main road because it’s sealed all the way—the back road is mostly gravel. The main road is dangerous—being the only direct north/south road on this side of the mountains, it’s traveled a lot. But since it’s quicker and easier to travel on, I stay to the side of the road as far as I can and pray for protection.
Going to work (heading south), I have to go around many curves, up three fairly steep hills, and then I reach the big hill—the fun one, because it’s all down. It is a little nerve-wracking when a bigger vehicle tries passing me while I’m going down in between a cut. Generally, I try to wait at the top until all vehicles have passed me before going down. And I keep my brakes on as I go, because losing control in that area would be deadly.
At the bottom of the big hill there is a bridge. It’s two lane, but still pretty narrow—you wouldn’t want to stay on there long. This particular Monday, I got to the bridge and was still going fairly fast from coming down the steep hill. I knew someone was behind me, but I decided to go ahead anyway instead of stopping to wait for them to pass me—if I hurried, I’d get across before they got to the bridge.
That was my mistake. About half-way across the bridge, trying to stay to the edge so I wouldn’t be in the way of the vehicle behind me, I skimmed the guard rail. I don’t think any part of me or my bike touched the rail, just my bag that I had hanging on my left handle. That was enough, though, and it upset my balance. Before I knew it, I was in the middle of the lane, with a vehicle coming from both ways—the south-bound behind me, the north-bound in front of me! I could feel the bike tipping under me, and I remember thinking one of those thoughts that take about a quarter of a second to process.
“I’m going to go on over. That vehicle coming will hit me.”
I really don’t know what happened next. Somehow, I stayed on my bike, and managed to get back to the very edge of my side of the road—just in time for both vehicles to pass safely. I grazed the guard rail again, but once again although I thought I must have REALLY dinged my bike up good this time, in retrospect I don’t think either of my tires or my pedals actually touched the rail. Shakily, I pedaled on as fast as I could and turned onto the much quieter road the place I work on is located. There, I inspected my bike, and was thankful to realize there was not a scratch on it. And I received no bruises from the incident.
I feel so thankful that I didn’t go on over. If the car behind me had been just a few seconds closer, I would have been hit (and I do feel sorry for the driver—I’m sure they had a heart attack seeing me in the middle of their lane!). I could have crashed into the guard rail, and that would have tipped me over. I know God had His hand on me, and kept me safe. The incident made me very thankful for guardian angels!
Thursday, when I went to work again, I made sure to stop and look behind me before going over that bridge. I was going slower, and as I went across I happened to see a light by the side of the road, where people generally don’t drive. When I went back to look, it was my back bike light—one I use for riding in the dark. It is generally attached right behind my seat (on the seat bar), and somehow snapped off Monday. That was the only thing that broke in the whole ordeal, and I really don’t know how it was hit. (Oh, and by the way—the way it broke made it very easy to fix, as well.) All I know is that God was keeping His eye on me!
So this Sunday, I come to share a thankful heart with you. God certainly does take care of us, and protects us—even when we can’t see the danger.
I am very thankful. But yet, as I think of it, I’m reminded of the age-old truth that says that it takes something big to direct our attention back to God. What a sad statement! How quickly we drift away from Him! How easy it is for the devil to come in and make us ungrateful of all the things the Lord has blessed us with! The lack of gratitude to the Lord for the little things of life reminds me of a powerful statement I heard recently. I can’t remember the exact wording, but it went something like this:
“The lack of strength in the church we see today is a direct result of the church disregarding the holiness of God.”
The men who were talking pointed out that if people would stop to realize for a moment how holy God is, and how His holiness affects us, modern Christianity as we know it would be completely different. People would be more on fire for the Lord.
I’m reminded of the words of Paul when he said,
“And not only so, but we glory in tribulations also: knowing that tribulation worketh patience….” (Romans 5:3)
Today, we as modern Christians have a major problem facing us. We have forgotten how holy the Lord is. We have forgotten that He is to be praised in everything, the little things as well as the big things. Paul calls us to praise the Lord even when we are in serious trouble—not just when big miraculous things happen! The same word “glory” here is also translated as “joy” and “rejoice” in other verses.
Even when the world is collapsing around you, hang onto the lifeline—Jesus Christ, our Lord. He can turn the impossible into possible. He can get you to the side of the road, even when you feel you’re going to tip off at any second.
How the Lord has shown Himself mighty in your life lately?