Last week my boyfriend and I dragged an unsuspecting coworker out for a fun-filled day of frolicking through what might be described by some as treacherous terrain. We battled briars! Mucked through mud! Engaged ice! At one point we tiptoed across a downed tree straddling a rushing creek and scrambled up the bank into one thousand thorn bushes only to discover our destination was really on other side and we’d crossed for naught. My coworker is a fantastic sport.
Our motto that day was “FORGING AHEAD” and we repeated it often and in loud voices as we tromped along. By the end of the hike, our arms and legs were covered in scratches and our feet were experiencing true freedom. Freedom, to borrow a line from a hiking book, is when your feet are so wet, they cannot get any damper and so it doesn’t matter anymore. This, my friends, is true freedom.
Glowing from the success of our hike, we piled into the car, left the parking lot, drove several blocks and were promptly hit by another car making an ill-timed turn. The car finished its ill-timed turn and roared off into the distance, never to be seen again.
We handled the situation with a grace that made Jesus proud.
(Just joking. We totally didn’t.)
After hollering choice profanity followed by some more profanity followed by some empty threats, we grudgingly turned the car around, dropped my coworker off, and headed home to pout and eat copious amounts of jellybeans. In moments of duress, jellybeans can be in order.
As I completed my prayer journal later that night, I paused at the “Others” step. I wasn’t feeling 100% prayerful toward the gentleman who hit us, but he was certainly making me think back to all the times I’ve done the wrong thing.
Everyone takes really stupid paths sometimes, paths where you look back and face palm yourself because you can’t believe you made such a dumb decision. Sometimes after stumbling down a path of great stupidity, I ‘fess up about my wrongdoings and ask for forgiveness, but other times I just casually move on with my life like it never happened. I hope that whenever I’ve taken that path, that whomever I’ve hurt prays that I do the right thing and forgives me for doing the wrong thing.
Lent is not only a time to try to take the right paths, it’s also a great time to try to forgive those who have wronged us and to ask forgiveness from those we have wronged. So that night I prayed for the guy who hit us, and then I prayed for myself, that I might carefully choose my actions and reactions, and forgo paths of great stupidity.
To that we say, FORGING AHEAD.