Anyone who intends to come with me has to let me lead. Your not in the drivers seat, I am. Dont run from suffering, embrace it. Follow me and I'll show you how. (from Matthew 16, The Message Bible)
My life is haunted by this verse. I don't like suffering and would prefer to never experience any and yet I know in my heart that it are these difficult experiences that I must go through that give my life its real potent color and my heart its tenderness.
Last friday Brenda and I were invited to go out to the movies with a couple of friends in the neighborhood. We were both excited by the prospect of a fun night out with friends. About 15 minutes before we were going to be picked up another neighbor stopped over asking to borrow some silver paint. I went downstairs to look for it and as I was looking through my supplies I slipped and bumped into a water pipe which cracked and began shooting water all over the basement floor. At this moment Brenda was upstairs getting herself beautiful for a rare night out. The crack happened between the main shut off valve and the pipes entrance out of the basement concrete floor. There was no way for me to shut it off and our friends were now at the door to take us to the movies. The whole situation felt really horrible as I watched water take over the basement floor.
We were able to tie off the pipe and slow the leak enough so that the basement drain kept the water from taking over the basement. We still went to the movies after a call to Goodwin Plumbing. We had a nice night out and the next morning we paid the plumber $394 after he had made everything dry, new and shiny again. The next night Saturday the Rick Beerhorst Band played a show at the DAAC with Seth and The Illogical Spoon and we had so many people come out we reached capacity and had to turn people away at the door. A wonderful young woman (also a neighbor) who heard me share our plumbing adventure from the stage felt lead to give my her food card which still had $240 for the month. She explained how she had all her groceries for the month and would like me to use up what was left on the card to buy groceries for our family. With the money value of that card together with the money off the door and CD sales we ended up making everything back we had to pay the plumber with in $2.
Our life together is often difficult but it is also an amazing adventure with God in the driver seat who by the way does not feel like a "safe" driver.